Light Week Features Key Non-Conference Contests
Big West Women's Water Polo Weekly Release No. 10
With no conference games and spring break on the horizon, the Big West Women's Water Polo squads will face off against top competition, including top-ranked Stanford, #4 UCLA and #12 Hartwick.
AROUND THE BIG WEST
GONZALEZ IN A LEAGUE OF HER OWN
Hawaii’s Irene Gonzalez has been the catalyst of the league’s top offensive unit. Gonzalez leads the Big West in goals (45), points (72), goals per game (2.25) and ranks second in points per game (3.60), assists per game (1.56) and tied for second in assists (27). Gonzalez has picked up at least one point in 17 of the Rainbow Wahine’s 20 contests, including a season-high nine thanks to five goals and four assists in a tight win over Pacific on February 24.
16 AND COUNTING
UC Davis finished just 16-18 a year ago but the Aggies have already shown dramatic improvement this season. UCD has matched its win total from a year ago against only seven losses thus far. With the Big West Tournament a month away, the Aggies are looking to improve upon fourth place showings in the regular season and Tournament from a year ago.
SANCHEZ HEATING UP
After missing several games due to injury, CSUN’s Madeleine Sanchez is recapturing the form that lead the Big West in goals in back-to-back seasons. Over her last seven matches, Sanchez has put up 15 goals and 8 assists for 23 points. It is her best seven-game stretch of the season and includes a season-high six goals in a win over Bucknell.
QUEEN OF THE SPRINTS
UC Santa Barbara’s Mollie Simmons is establishing herself as the top sprint winner in the Big West. Simmons has won 56 of her 63 sprints, an imprssive 88.9% winning percentage. She has won the most sprints in the league and has the third-best percentage in the conference.
The current rankings haven’t changed too much for Big West clubs but all six remain ranked in the top 25, with three in the top 10. Hawai’i leads the way at #5 with UC Irvine at #7. UC Davis sits at #10, Long Beach State #14, UC Santa Barbara is #17 and CSUN sits at #20.
This season has seen a pair of coaches reach career milestones. UC Irvine’s Dan Klatt became the first coach in league history to reach the 200 win plateau when the Anteaters downed CSUN in conference action. UCI was also involved in the other coaching milestone in a loss to Hawai’i. The Rainbow Wahine victory gave coach Maureen Cole win No. 100 for her career.