For the first time in Big West Women's Water Polo history, two teams will represent the conference at the NCAA Tournament hosted by Stanford University May 8-10. Hawai'i earned the league's automatic berth after clinching the Big West Conference Championship Sunday, and UC Irvine earned an at-large bid as the NCAA Selection Committee announced the 10-team field Monday.
While the top six teams have been placed in the bracket, including Hawai'i and UC Irvine, the remaining four teams will play for an opportunity to secure a berth in the bracket via two play-in games conducted on May 2.
The Rainbow Wahine (18-8) will play in game two on May 8 in the first round versus USC (22-5) at the Avery Aquatic Center in Stanford, Calif. at 4:45 pm PT. The 'Bows met the Trojans earlier this season on March 20 when USC recorded a 10-1 victory.
The Anteaters (19-8) will play California (19-7) in the final game of the first round at Stanford at 8:15 pm PT. Cal owns a 2-0 record over the 'Eaters this season after playing to a 9-4 win on Feb. 1 and a 10-6 advantage on Feb. 21.
This is Hawaii's second trip to the NCAAs as a member of the Big West Conference and it is Irvine's fourth.
The 2015 championship will be an eight-team, single-elimination tournament (12 games), with a losers’ bracket to determine places three through eight.
Photos from the 2015 Big West Women's Water Polo Championship Final - (1) UC Irvine vs. (3) Hawai'i on Sunday, April 26, 2015.All photos by Shane Grace.