Four UCI teams won Big West Conference tournament championships in a nine-day span this spring.
Women's water polo captured its second straight league title when the fourth-seeded Anteaters defeated No. 2 seed Cal State Northridge 12-11 in the April 25 final at Long Beach State.
One week later, both UCI tennis teams claimed conference crowns in the Big West tournament at the Indian Wells Tennis Garden. The third-seeded women's team won its first league title by knocking off top-seeded Long Beach State 4-1 in the championship match. The men won their first conference title since 2005 — and their 13th overall — with a 4-0 victory over Cal Poly.
Men's golf capped the streak May 4 with a 17-shot victory at the Mission Viejo Country Club.
All four UCI head coaches — Dan Klatt (women's water polo), Mike Edles (women's tennis), Trevor Kronemann (men's tennis) and Paul Smolinski (men's golf) — were named Big West Coaches of the Year.
UCI Athletics honored 117 students as 2009-10 Big West Scholar-Athletes at a May banquet.
The Big West Conference awards the scholar-athlete title to those who have maintained a high level of scholastic achievement while participating in intercollegiate athletics. UCI expanded eligibility for the designation to players on teams that don't participate in Big West-sponsored sports.
This year's event included new male and female Athlete of the Year awards for each class. Track & field standout Lauren Collins and baseball player Francis Larson received senior designations. Collins also graces the cover of the July issue of Runner's World Magazine.
New UCI men's basketball head coach Russell Turner and his squad face a demanding schedule in 2010-11.
The Anteaters open the season Nov. 8 at the University of Illinois and have nonconference road dates Nov. 13 at USC and Dec. 23 at UCLA. Nonconference home games include a sub-regional tournament for the Coaches vs. Cancer Classic at the Bren Events Center on Nov. 19-21 with Navy, Seattle and Louisiana Tech. San Jose State, Loyola Marymount and Wyoming will visit the Bren in December.
Forward Eric Wise, who averaged 16.3 points, 6.5 rebounds and 3.0 assists as a sophomore last season, became the second player in UCI history (and the first in 37 years) to lead the team in scoring, rebounding and assists. Wise was named to the All-Big West second team each of his first two seasons and has accumulated 955 points and 392 rebounds in his UCI career.
UCI volleyball fans may see a familiar face when the U.S. men's national volleyball team competes in the 2010 Fédération Internationale de Volleyball World League this month and next.
Jayson Jablonsky '07, a former American Volleyball Coaches Association Player of the Year, made the 19-man roster for the FIVB, an elite men's volleyball competition in which the world's best teams are divided into four pools and play for six straight weekends, from June 4 to July 11. Winners from each pool qualify for the final round July 21-25 in Cordoba, Argentina, along with the host country and a pick from among the second-place teams.
The U.S. volleyball staff chooses a team of 12 to 14 players from the roster for each weekend of the competition.
Jablonsky also was among four current and former UCI players who helped the national volleyball team win the 2010 Pan American Cup on May 30.