Jan. 5, 2012
By Nic Hallisey
Athletic Media Relations
BRIDGEPORT, Pa.—The 2012 Preseason Women's Varsity National Top 20 Poll was released Wednesday, with the Colorado State water polo team garnering five votes, its most ever. The Collegiate Water Polo Association (CWPA) made the announcement.
“I’m excited to be receiving votes again,” Coach Mike Moody said. “We’ve never been this high before in a preseason poll, and to receive this many votes is an honor.”
The five votes were the most by a team outside the top 20, giving the Rams the No. 21 slot in the poll. It is the most votes ever received by CSU, and ties the highest overall ranking in program history. The Rams, which received votes on five occasions last season—but never more than three—peaked at No. 21.
“It’s exciting that the rest of the country is recognizing the type of program we have here at Colorado State,” Moody said. “To start the year with the most ever votes and tied for the program’s best ranking is pretty cool.”
What makes it even more special is the fact that the Rams did so after losing four seniors off the 2011 roster, including the program’s all-time goals and assists leader in All-American Ali Pavlik. CSU will have three seniors this season, however, including Kallie Berry, in addition to a junior class that includes goalie Melissa Fisher and utility player Caroline Young.
While the national attention is an honor, Moody and the Rams know they have their work cut out for them.
At least seven opponents on CSU’s schedule are also ranked or receiving votes, including CSU’s first five games. The Rams open up play in just over two weeks, on Jan. 21, in the Michigan Kick Off. There they will face No. 3 UCLA and No. 10 Indiana, and will twice face host and 12th-ranked Michigan. CSU will then return home for its first competition at the new Veterans Memorial Aquatic Center, facing No. 15 UC San Diego on Jan. 26.
“Now that we’re receiving votes, we have to do a good job in the pool,” Moody said. “We have to stay focused and continue to improve.”
CSU will also host Indiana, and is scheduled to face No. 6 UC Irvine, UC San Diego, No. 18 Princeton and Harvard (RV) on the road. Other opponents that CSU is expected to see in tournaments this season include San Jose State (No. 5), San Diego State (No. 8), Loyola Marymount (No. 11) and Santa Clara (RV), in addition to others.
Defending national champion Stanford earned the No. 1 spot for the second year in a row. For the complete poll, visit here.