Nicole Iturraran is ready to make a splash as an Aztec.

On top of that, the Tokay High girls water polo will be staying in California after she graduates from the campus toward the end of next month.

On Monday afternoon, Iturraran signed her NCAA National Letter of Intent inside the Tokay High library. The senior signed a scholarship to attend and play water polo at San Diego State, which is an NCAA Division I campus. Iturraran is the only Tokay High senior athlete from the Class of 2019 who has inked a National Letter of Intent this school year.

Iturraran, who is also on the Tokay High girls swimming team, is excited about the next chapter in her life that begins this fall.

“I’m really happy that I’m going to be doing a sport in college,” Iturraran said. “They have good people on campus, which is a really big aspect that I like. I have a few friends that go to San Diego State, so it will be fun.”

Iturraran, who is part of the Tokay High girls swim team, said she would be given a chance to compete her freshman year next spring. College women’s water polo is playing in the spring.

“I want to make the travel roster this year,” Iturraran said.

As of Monday, this year’s San Diego State women’s water polo team has a 15-13 overall record that includes a 5-2 mark in the Mountain West Conference. According to its roster on its athletic website – goaztecs.com – there are three seniors on the team. There are 10 freshmen on the roster. Most of the women on the team are from Southern California, although one of the three from Northern California is sophomore Emily Bennett, a 2017 Oakdale High graduate.

Iturraran said that there were four colleges that she was considering. But the college’s business and communications’ departments — Iturraran is planning to major in business with a minor in communication – sold her on staying in the Golden State.

“It’s such a beautiful place to be,” Iturraran said. “I really like the academic part of it. They cater to the athletes’ needs, the academics, making sure that it’s not all about athletics. I really like that part.”

The process was lengthy, Iturraran admitted. But in the end, she’s looking forward to becoming an Aztec.

“It was very stressful,” Iturraran said. “As an athlete, you have to email coaches, constantly trying to get their attention.”

Last fall, Iturraran and Tokay posted a 21-4 record that included a share of the Tri-City Athletic League title. The Tigers won their first two Sac-Joaquin Section Division II playoff games, both at Tokay’s swimming pool, against Buhach Colony of Atwater and Del Oro of Loomis. Tokay faced Rio Americano of Sacramento in the section’s title game, as the Raiders posted 9-5 win to win the blue banner.

Iturraran had 127 goals, plus 39 steals and 24 assists.

Contact Mike Bush at mikeb@lodinews.com. Follow on Twitter: @MBushLodiSports.

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