HONOLULU—(Hawaii Athletics) University of Hawai'i head softball coach Bob Coolen released the 2013 schedule on Monday which features 58 total games with 39 home games (including two exhibition games) held at the Rainbow Wahine Softball Stadium. The 'Bows will battle 30 different teams from nine different conferences. Highlighting the schedule are nine teams that advanced to the 2012 NCAA tournament—including Washington, who played in the Super Regionals, and California and Oregon who both made it to the Women's College World Series in Oklahoma City, Okla.
Hawai'i will once again host four non-conference tournaments, beginning with the Oceanic Time Warner Cable Paradise Classic (Feb. 7-9), with Ole Miss, St. Mary's, UAB, and Washington.
The Rainbow Wahine will then head to Las Vegas, Nev. for their first roadtrip of the season to play in UNLV's Louisville-Slugger Desert Classic (Feb. 14-17) where UH will take on UCLA, Oregon, Utah Valley State, and three Western Athletic Conference teams—BYU, San Jose State, and Oregon.
UH then returns home and after a short layoff, the squad has a stacked schedule with their final three tournaments in March. First up, is the Bank of Hawaii Invitational (Mar. 1-3) featuring Campbell, Memphis, and Western Kentucky followed by the Pepsi Malihini Kipa Aloha Tournament (Mar. 8-10) with Portland State, East Carolina and exhibition games against Tokyo Women's College of Physical Education (TWCPE). Hawai'i ends their non-conference tournament schedule with the very competitive Chevron Spring Fling Tournament (Mar. 13-16) in which Baylor, California, Syracuse and Utah will make their way to Honolulu.
After 16 years in the WAC, the Rainbow Wahine return to compete in the ten-team Big West Conference this year. Unlike the WAC, the Big West does not have a conference tournament, so every game is crucial during league play. Hawai'i will host a total of four conference, three-game series against UC Davis (Mar. 29-30), UC Riverside (Apr. 5-6), Long Beach State (Apr. 26-27), and UC Santa Barbara (May 3-4).
The Rainbow Wahine—who finished 2012 ranked No. 22 with an RPI ranking at No. 23—return 13 letterwinners from last year's conference champion team that posted a 44-9 overall record and advanced to the program's 10th NCAA tournament. Senior All-Americans Jessica Iwata and Kelly Majam will lead the 2013 team along with all-conference senior pitcher Kaia Parnaby and first baseman/designated player Leisha Li'ili'i who was voted last season's WAC Freshman of the Year.
Fans can get their first glimpse of the 2013 squad in November with the Fall Paradise Classic (Nov. 2-3) with Chaminade and Kumamoto International College. The current Rainbow Wahine will battle their Alumnae in their annual game on Nov. 9 at 6:00 p.m. and then the team will finish their fall slate of games with an intrasquad scrimmage on the island of Kaua'i on Nov. 11 at 12:00 p.m. held at the Waimea Canyon Park.