Hawai'i Eyes Big West Title, Top Seed In Conference Tournament
Big West Women's Water Polo Weekly Release No. 13
This weekend will bring the Big West Women's Water Polo Tournament seeds into clearer focus, headlined by Hawai'i seeking its first outright Big West regular season title and the top seed at the tourney.
AROUND THE BIG WEST
HAWAI’I NEARS CONFERENCE CROWN
Hawai’i stands atop the Big West standings with two games to go, putting itself in prime position for the Big West regular season crown. A win over UC Santa Barbara Saturday gives the Rainbow Wahine a share of the regular season crown and the #1 seed in the upcoming Big West Tournament. The ‘Bows can also win the title outright with a UC Davis loss on the same day. If the Aggies win, UH can win the regular season title outright the following day with a win over CSUN. It would be the first outright regular season championship for Hawai’i in their Big West tenure.
AGGIES EYE FIRST ROUND BYE
UC Davis controls its own destiny for the #2 seed in the Big West Tournament. A pair of wins over CSUN and UC Santa Barbara gives the Aggies the second slot and a first round bye in the tourney. UCD can also claim a share of the Big West title with a pair of wins and one Hawai’i loss.
CSUN’s Madeleine Sanchez is making her way up the all-time Big West chart in goals, entering elite territory in the process. Sanchez has 221 career goals entering the final two regular season contests of her career, second-most in Big West history and just four shy of becoming the all-time leader. Sanchez not only set the school career record for scores, but is also only the second player in Big West history to score 220 or more career goals. If she can get to 225 goals, she would pass former UCI talisman Jessy Cardey who tallied 224 from 2011-14.
UC Santa Barbara averages 8.9 goals per game and three players are a big part of it. Sarah Snyder leads the team with 45 scores, while Kate Pipkin (39) and Sarah Kreiser (35) are not too far behind. Their combined 119 goals are the second-most by a trio in the Big West.
UC Davis was the big mover in the rankings this week, moving up two spots to #8 after its win over then seventh-ranked UC Irvine. Hawai’i still leads the way at #5 with UCI coming in at #9. Long Beach State is ranked #14, UC Santa Barbara checks in at #17 and #20 is occupied by CSUN in this week’s rankings.
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.