Feb. 15, 2006
Santa Clara, Calif. - Entering a tournament where 11 of the 14 participants are ranked in the country's Top 20 can be a daunting task, but for the No. 20 Santa Clara women's water polo team, last weekend's Triton Tournament was a chance to show everyone they are a force to be reckoned with in 2006. While the Broncos finished with a record of 2-3, including a tough 5-4 defeat at the hands of No. 8 San Diego State in the first round, head coach Keith Wilbur fully expects his team to bounce back and contend for the title in the upcoming Slugfest Tournament, hosted by local rival UC Santa Cruz. The Broncos' first opponent on Saturday will be the host Banana Slugs.
"Last weekend's tournament in San Diego was a tough tournament, but, more than anything, I think it was a valuable experience for our team. I think it will really benefit us this weekend at the Slugfest which has the same type of game schedule," stated Wilbur.
After facing off with UC Santa Cruz, Santa Clara returns later that day to battle Cal State Bernadino in a 5:45 p.m. showdown. The following day, Colorado State will be SCU's first opponent at 8:30 a.m., followed by a 1:30 p.m. date with Sonoma State. While Santa Clara will not be facing any ranked teams this weekend at the Slugfest Tournament, that does not mean the level of play will be diluted and Wilbur anticipates a fight in every match.
"Every game this weekend is a conference game, so they are all important. We've had tough close games with San Bernadino and Sonoma State the past couple of years, so those should both be good games," said Wilbur. "Colorado State is in their second year of existence, but they are building fast, so we expect good competition from them as well. UC Santa Cruz has always been our local rival, so that will always be a big game."
2006 UCSC Women's Slugfest
Saturday Feb. 18
11:00am Santa Clara vs. UC Santa Cruz
5:45pm CS San Bernadino vs. Santa Clara
Sunday Feb. 19
8:30 am Colorado State vs. Santa Clara
1:30 pm Sonoma State vs. Santa Clara