HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) – The 2012 University of Hawai'i women's volleyball schedule was announced today and includes 19 home matches at the Stan Sheriff Center. The schedule includes defending national champion UCLA and 2011 NCAA Tournament participants Stanford, Long Beach State, Baylor, and Albany.
The Rainbows open the season hosting the Chevron Rainbow Wahine Invitational, which includes Albany, Saint Mary's, and Stanford. UH plays Albany on Friday, Aug. 24, then faces St. Mary's on Saturday, and takes on Stanford in the tournament finale on Sunday.
The Hawaiian Airlines Wahine Volleyball Classic runs from Aug. 31-Sept. 2. UH plays San Francisco to open the Classic, then takes on Baylor the following night and closes the tournament against California.
UH wraps up its tournament schedule with the Verizon Volleyball Challenge beginning Sept. 7, hosting San Diego State, Idaho, and UCLA. The Rainbow Wahine face San Diego State the opening night of the tournament, followed by Idaho and UCLA.
The Rainbow Wahine will then begin their first Big West Conference season since 1995, marking the end of a 16-year run in the Western Athletic Conference. In their previous final season as a member of the Big West, the 'Bows ran the table with an 18-0 conference record and hope to continue that success when they open conference play at Cal State Northridge (Sept. 19). Hawai'i will play its Big West home opener on Sept. 27 against UC Irvine.
In the Big West, UH will renew long-time conference rivalries with Long Beach State and UC Santa Barbara. LBSU and Hawai'i faced off in the NCAA Northwest Regional five times during UH's eight-year run in the Big West. The 49ers won every meeting, but the Rainbow Wahine finally broke through in 2000 when they topped Long Beach State in the regional semifinal at the Stan Sheriff Center. They followed that win by beating UC Santa Barbara to advance to the Final Four. While a Big West member, Hawai'i had a combined 18-17 record against both teams.
Season ticket renewals have been mailed and the deadline to renew is March 23.