The Cal Poly Pomona women's volleyball team will open play in the NCAA Division II Southwest Regional against California Collegiate Athletic Assn. rival UC Riverside at 7:30 p.m. Friday at Cal State Bakersfield.
Pomona enters the three-team regional ranked 15th in Division II with a 31-12 record. It is the most victories ever for a Bronco team. Riverside is 18-12 and has been a perennial Division II power.
The winner of Friday's match will take on defending national champion Bakersfield (28-11) Saturday. The Broncos tied Bakersfield for the CCAA title, but Bakersfield came back to defeat Pomona in three consecutive games in a tiebreaker match last week to receive the conference's automatic berth in the playoffs.
The Broncos had defeated Bakersfield in a regular-season match in five games last week to earn a share of the title.
First-year Pomona Coach Gene Krieger was honored last week by being selected CCAA, American Volleyball Coaches Assn. and Southwest Region coach of the year. He is also one of eight finalists for the national coach of the year award that will be announced next week.
Four Pomona players were also named to the All-CCAA squad. Senior outside hitters Dina Gutierrez and Jody Fee and sophomore setter Trang Nguyen were selected to the second team and sophomore outside hitter Alicia Burns, who set a school record with 114 service aces, received honorable mention.
After winning the Bronco Classic for the third year in a row, the Cal Poly Pomona women's basketball team will meet UC Santa Barbara, an NCAA Division I opponent, at 7:30 p.m. Saturday in Goleta.
The Broncos, who finished third in the NCAA Division II last season and are ranked No. 2 in a preseason poll, will take a 2-0 record into the nonconference game.
Pomona opened its season with a 82-59 victory over Grand Canyon of Arizona and defeated UC Davis, 72-67, in the tournament final.
The Broncos were led by 5-foot-11 sophomore forward Tami Chick and 5-6 senior guard Debbie Wagner.
Wagner, a transfer from Northern Arizona, earned most valuable player honors in the tournament with her two-game totals of 24 points and 10 assists. Chick scored 26 points and grabbed 12 rebounds against Grand Canyon.
Pomona also starts 5-11 senior Stephanie Coons at forward, 6-2 junior Leslie Ellis at center and 5-5 freshman Nicole Sanders at guard. Sanders was a prep standout at Lynwood High last season.
The Broncos have also announced that senior guard Carrie Egan will redshirt this season because of a muscle injury. Freshman guard Rose Jong from Muir High will take her place on the roster. Jong was originally scheduled to redshirt this season.