Another season is almost complete and, as usual, it feels like just yesterday that we were welcoming a new class of freshmen to our campus to begin their college experience.
That was nearly nine months ago and a lot has happened since then. The men's and women's soccer teams each won West Coast Conference championships and Cameron Rast's men advanced to the NCAA semifinals. The Bronco women's cross country and volleyball teams each achieved program-best rankings. During their seasons, the distance squad ranked ninth in the region, while the volleyball team was rated as high as 12th nationally.
Dick Davey's basketball team started and ended the season on ESPN, opening the year at the prestigious Maui Invitational and culminating it with that heartbreaking one-point loss to fourth-ranked Gonzaga in the WCC Championships semifinal. We watched a young group of women's basketball players grow up right in front of our eyes as they nearly knocked-off 10th-ranked Georgia in the Leavey Center.
During the winter, we announced a major gift from Steve Schott that will provide our institution with a first-class baseball stadium. In March, we successfully hosted the WCC Tournament and, largely based on our ability to run a first-class event, were asked to do it again in 2005.
Just two weeks ago, Marcy Crouch's softball team went on a 14-game conference win streak and win the Pacific Coast Softball Conference championship. Considering the squad started the season with a 2-10 record, winning the conference title is a major accomplishment and serves as an inspiration to all our teams.
And, I'd be remiss in not mentioning the significant accomplishment of our club women's lacrosse team. It qualified for an invitation to the US Lacrosse Women's Division Intercollegiate Associates National Championships in St. Louis, Mo. It was one of only 12 teams in the country selected to play in these championships and was seeded eighth overall. These are students who play solely for the love of the game, do not receive athletic scholarships and fundraised over $15,000 to make this trip happen. What a great opportunity for this young women and we are proud of their accomplishment.
Over the past 10 months or so, we have been working with the Office of Communications and Marketing, as well as a number of other people on campus, to develop a new Bronco mascot logo. I'm pleased to report that we have completed the project and will soon be unveiling our new Bronco logo and a set of marks that accurately reflects the energy and direction of our department.
One of the first things we will be doing is working with College Sports Online to redesign our website as well as initiating a comprehensive licensing program with the Collegiate Licensing Company. There will be more to report on this exciting venture in the coming months.