UH gears for return to Vegas


POSTED: Thursday, April 30, 2009

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Hawaii, which has won eight consecutive Western Athletic Conference volleyball tournaments, will go for its ninth in a row—10th overall—when the league tourney returns to Las Vegas for the first time since 1998.

In the title match 11 years ago, the Rainbow Wahine outlasted Brigham Young in 3 hours, 38 minutes ... the longest match in NCAA history. This year's event is scheduled for the Orleans Arena, Nov. 23-25.

“;Although home court (advantage) is huge, it's probably best to be at a neutral site,”; Hawaii coach Dave Shoji said. “;But with 20,000 transplanted Hawaii people in Las Vegas, it could be to our advantage.

“;It's centrally located, which is a good thing for fans. (Las Vegas) was an exciting place to play in the old WAC.”;

Hawaii hosted the WAC tournament last November. The rotation was supposed to send the event to Boise State, but WAC commissioner Karl Benson told the Star-Bulletin last season that the conference was looking for a neutral site, with Las Vegas the likely candidate.

The WAC tournament caps a regular-season schedule in which the Wahine host many teams that qualified for last season's NCAA tournament. Included is NCAA runner-up Stanford, which ended UH's season in the regional championship last December.

The Wahine open the season by hosting three tournaments—Aug. 28-30, Sept. 3-6 and Sept. 10-12.

The Rainbow Wahine open WAC play Sept. 24 at home against Boise State.

The NCAA tournament starts Dec. 3 and runs through Dec. 19. The final four is scheduled for Tampa, Fla.




2009 Schedule

        » Home matches at Stan Sheriff Center

        » All home matches 7 p.m. unless otherwise noted

        » x-denotes WAC match

Chevron Invitational
        Aug. 28: UCLA vs. Santa Clara, 5 p.m.; Western Michigan at Hawaii. Aug. 29: Western Michigan vs. UCLA, 5 p.m.; Santa Clara at Hawaii. Aug. 30: Santa Clara vs. Western Michigan, 11 a.m.; UCLA at Hawaii, 5 p.m.


Hawaiian Airlines Classic
        Sept. 3: Texas vs. California, 5 p.m.; St. Louis at Hawaii. Sept. 5: California vs. St. Louis, 5 p.m.; Texas at Hawaii. Sept. 6: St. Louis vs. Texas, 3 p.m.; California at Hawaii, 5 p.m.


        Sept. 10: Stanford vs. UT-San Antonio, 5 p.m.; Weber State at Hawaii. Sept. 11: Weber State vs. Stanford, 5 p.m.; UT-San Antonio at Hawaii. Sept. 12: UT-San Antonio vs. Weber State, 5 p.m.; Stanford at Hawaii.


REgular Season (September)
        Sept. 18-19: Pepperdine. Sept. 24: x-Boise State. Sept. 26: x-Idaho.


Regular Season (October)
        Oct. 1: x-at Louisiana Tech. Oct. 3: x-at New Mexico State. Oct. 8: x-Nevada. Oct. 9: x-San Jose State. Oct. 14: x-Louiaiana Tech. Oct. 17: x-New Mexico State. Oct. 23: BYU-Hawaii. Oct. 29: x-at Fresno State. Oct. 31: x-at Nevada.


Regular Season (November)
        Nov. 2: x-at San Jose State. Nov. 6: x-Fresno State. Nov. 8: x-Utah State, 5 p.m. Nov. 12: x-at Boise State. Nov. 14: x-at Idaho. Nov. 16: x-at Utah State.


WAC Tournament
        Nov. 23-25: at Las Vegas.


NCAA Tournament
        Dec. 3-6: First and second rounds. Dec. 11-12: Regionals. Dec. 17 and 19: Semifinals and championship, Tampa, Fla.