Indiana University Releases 2011 Women's Water Polo Schedule
BLOOMINGTON, Ind. -- Head coach Barry King has announced the schedule for the upcoming 2011 Indiana University women’s water polo season. The Hoosiers will once again compete against many of the nation’s best throughout the year, beginning with the always difficult field at the Michigan Kick-Off in Ann Arbor on January 22-23.
"As has been the case the past few years, the schedule involves contests against all of the best squads in the country," said King. "I expect that we will see everybody in the top ten that’s not named Indiana University at one point or another."
The Hoosiers will then make their first western road trip of the season as they head to Davis, Calif. for a February 4 meeting against UC Davis slated to begin at 4 p.m. PT. Indiana then travels to Palo Alto, Calif. for the Stanford Invitational on February 5-6.
"The Stanford Invite will involve many of the top eight teams in the country," King said. "Then to add the Davis match on the front end of that, it will be a very demanding weekend for us. It will give us a good indication of where we’re at very early on."
After two weekends away from competition, the Hoosiers will return to California for a tournament in Santa Clara on February 26-27. The tournament schedule is yet to be determined, however it will feature Pacific, Cal State Monterey Bay, and host Santa Clara.
Indiana will then travel to Princeton on March 5-6 for their first action against Collegiate Water Polo Association (CWPA) opponents.
Indiana will begin their Spring Break the following weekend by traveling to San Diego State for the Aztec Invitational on March 12-13. The Hoosiers will conclude the trip with the Lancer Invite hosted by Cal Baptist in Riverside, Calif. on March 17-18.
Indiana returns to Bloomington for their first home match of the 2011 season as they host rival Michigan on March 26 at 2 p.m. ET.
"The Michigan game is always big and we expect that to be as heated a contest as that rivalry deserves," said King.
The Hoosiers will see their first action during the month of April in Erie, Pa. as they take on divisional opponents Gannon and Mercyhurst on April 8.
The Hoosiers will then compete in a pair of events that feature CWPA competition that the team will likely encounter during the postseason. The Hoosiers head over to Lewisburg on April 9-10 to compete in the Bison Invitational at Bucknell for the second consecutive season. The following weekend, the Hoosiers will be in Maryland for matches on April 16-17.
At the end of the month, Indiana will host the 2011 CWPA Eastern Championship on April 29-May 1 at the Counsilman-Billingsley Aquatic Center. The 2011 Eastern Championship will be the first to feature all the Division I-II teams as the league membership voted to expand the championship to 12-teams beginning in 2011.
"It's really important for us to host this event simply because we have good crowds, we have a nice following, we have people who genuinely care about the people that are on this team," said King. "So getting to play those really meaningful contests in front of your people is always special. It will make not only us give better and fuller efforts, but it will make striving for the victory that much more meaningful for us."
The winner at the CWPA Eastern Championship will earn an automatic berth into the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Championship in Ann Arbor, Mich. on May 13-15.