PHS alum joins sister at Fresno Pacific University
After making a splash for Cuesta Community College men’s water polo, Porterville High School alumnus Steven Chapman is headed to Fresno Pacific University this fall to continue his athletic career.
The 6-foot-3 driver signed with the FPU Sunbirds on a partial scholarship in February. Chapman, a 2017 PHS graduate, joins younger sister Rosemary at the Pacific Western Conference, NCAA Division II university. Rosemary is a freshman on the Sunbirds’ women’s water polo team.
During his senior year of water polo at Porterville, Steven set a school record with 163 goals en route to being selected the All-East Yosemite League MVP, The Recorder’s 2016 Orange Belt Boys Water Polo Player of the Year and signing with Pepperdine University.
An injury kept him from playing for Pepperdine but Steven recovered and joined San Luis Obispo’s Cuesta College Cougars men’s water polo team in 2018.
As a freshman, Steven finished third on the team in goals scored (49), second in assists (24) and second in ejections drawn (27). He also totaled 14 steals, started all 30 games and was a second-team, All-Western State Conference selection.
This past season, Cuesta went 26-9 on the overall season and 5-1 in conference for a share of the WSC title. The Cougars advanced to the CCCAA Men’s Water Polo SoCal Regional Championships as the No. 5 seed, but lost in overtime to No. 1 Long Beach 13-12 in the semifinals. Steven had two goals and one assist against Long Beach. The Cougars’ finished third in the tournament after beating No. 6 LA Valley 11-9 in the third-place game.
In 22 games for his sophomore season, Steven scored 13 goals, nine steals, 15 ejections drawn and three blocks. He missed a handful of games due to an illness but still finished second on the team with 19 assists. He was also an All-WSC honorable mention.
In high school, both Chapman siblings were outstanding swimmers and water polo players for the Panthers. Steven helped lead the Porterville boys to Central Section titles in 2013 (Division III) and 2016 (Div. II), while Rosemary anchored the girls’ 2018 Div. II Valley championship team — the program’s first title in 12 years.
Steven was also a Valley champion swimmer, winning gold in all four of his events in 2017. Along with Rosemary, the two were selected The Recorder’s 2017 Orange Belt Boys and Girls Swimmers of the Year.