SANTA CLARA, Calif. – The Santa Clara University women's water polo team has announced its 2011 spring schedule, which features home games with Indiana, Harvard, UC Davis and two weekend tournaments at the Sullivan Aquatics Center on SCU's Mission Campus.
"My philosophy on scheduling is to play a lot of games against good competition," said ninth-year SCU head water polo coach Keith Wilbur. "I think playing against tough opponents throughout the season is the best thing to prepare us for the conference tournament at the end of April."
Santa Clara had the third-best record in the 10-team Western Water Polo Association (WWPA) a year ago. The Broncos went 17-16 overall, including a 10-7 mark within league play.
Possible opponents who ranked among the nation's Top 20 last season include: No. 3 California, No. 4 LMU, No. 6 Hawaii, No. 8 San Jose State, No. 12 Indiana, No. 14 Pacific, No. 18 UC San Diego, No. 19 UC Davis and No. 20 Cal Baptist.
"This will be one of the most athletic teams I have coached," said Wilbur about his 2011 roster. "I like the fact that they can push the tempo throughout the game. We have a lot of youth, with very big sophomore and freshmen classes. They have a lot of energy and are excited to play. That being said, we also have some solid upperclassmen returning, and I think that group will provide great leadership."
"We have a lot of potential to improve over the course of the season as the freshmen gain experience playing at the college level, and the team gains experience playing together."
The Broncos open the year on Saturday, January 29 at San Jose State's Spartan Invite. SCU will travel to Southern California to play at UC San Diego's Triton Invitational the weekend of February 12-13 following a pair of early-season games in Monterey, Calif.
The official home-opener is scheduled for Saturday, February 19 against Cal Baptist, which is part of a five-game homestand in late February. SCU's home pool at the at the Sullivan Aquatics Center will be the site of The Rodeo Tournament (Feb. 26-27) and The Bronco Invitational (Apr. 9-10).
"I really like our schedule," said Wilbur. "We have a nice balance of home and away games, and we will be playing good teams every weekend throughout the season."
A home date with UC Davis on Saturday, April 23 precludes the WWPA Championships, which will be hosted the weekend of April 29-May 1 by Cal State University East Bay.
For tickets or more information call the Santa Clara ticket office at 408-554-4660.
SAT 29 - @ SJSU Spartan Invite
SUN 30 - @ SJSU Spartan Invite
SAT 5 - @ CSU Monterey Bay
SAT 5 - vs. Fresno-Pacific %
SUN 13 - @ UCSD Triton Invite
SAT 19 - @ CSU East Bay
SAT 19 - CAL BAPTIST
FRI 25 - SONOMA STATE
SAT 26 - CSU MONTEREY BAY #
SAT 26 - PACIFIC vs. INDIANA #
SAT 26 - CSU MONTEREY BAY vs. INDIANA #
SAT 26 - PACIFIC #
SUN 27 - INDIANA #
SAT 5 - @ UC Davis Aggie Shootout
SUN 6 - @ UC Davis Aggie Shootout
SUN 13 - HARVARD
SAT 19 - ALUMNI GAME
THU 24 - @ Sonoma State
SAT 2 - vs. CSU San Bernardino ^
SAT 2 - @ Loyola Marymount
SAT 9 - THE BRONCO INVITE
CALIFORNIA, HAWAII, LMU, SJSU, UCSD, COLORADO ST.,
CSU SAN BERNARDINO, CSU BAKERSFIELD, SONOMA ST.
SUN 10 - THE BRONCO INVITE
SAT 16 - @ CSU Bakersfield Tournament
SUN 17 - @ CSU Bakersfield Tournament
SAT 23 - UC DAVIS
FRI 29 - @ WWPA Championships (Hayward, Calif.)
SAT 30 - @ WWPA Championships (Hayward, Calif.)
SUN 1 - @ WWPA Championships (Hayward, Calif.)
All Times Pacific
All Home Games BOLD and Played at the Sullivan Aquatics Center
% Played at CSU Monterey Bay
# The Rodeo Tournament at Santa Clara
^ Played at LMU