(Hawaii Athletics) - University of Hawai'i women's volleyball head coach Robyn Ah Mow-Santos released the team's 2018 schedule, which includes 18 home matches at the Stan Sheriff Center and nine road games. The home schedule features a challenging slate including teams from six different conferences—including UCLA, Coastal Carolina, Oregon, and defending Big West champions Cal Poly—who all advanced to last year's NCAA tournament.
Hawai'i will begin the season with the Rainbow Wahine Classic from August 24-26. The tourney will feature Gonzaga (WCC), Kansas State (Big 12) and perennial power UCLA. Last year, the Bruins advanced to the NCAA Regionals while finishing the year ranked at No. 14 in the AVCA's final poll with a 22-11 overall record.
The 'Bows will then take on Coastal Carolina in a pair of matches on Thursday, Aug. 30 and Friday, Aug. 31. The Chanticleers, who are making their first appearance in Honolulu, are the two-time defending Sun Belt Conference champions. Last year the Chants posted a 20-8 overall record and 15-1 conference mark.
Hawai'i will then host its second and final tournament, the Rainbow Wahine Volleyball Challenge which runs from Thursday, Sept. 6 through Sunday, Sept. 9. Coming to compete will be former Western Athletic Conference rivals, San Diego State (Mountain West) and Idaho (Big Sky) in addition to Portland (WCC). The match against the Aztecs of SDSU will be a battle between two UH All-American alumnae head coaches as Deitre Collins-Parker will take on Ah Mow-Santos for the first time.
The Rainbow Wahine will then conclude their non-conference home schedule with a two-match series against Oregon. Last year, the Ducks advanced to their seventh-straight NCAA tournament after recording an 18-12 overall record. The 'Bows will battle the Ducks on back-to-back nights on Thursday, Sept. 13 and Friday, Sept. 14.
UH will have 16 conference matches. Hawai'i will open their Big West schedule on the road, facing UC Davis on Friday, Sept. 21 and UC Irvine on Sunday, Sept. 23. On the Rainbow Wahine's last road trip, UH will take on CSUN on Nov. 2 and Long Beach State on Nov. 3 followed by their final non-conference match of the season at Pepperdine in Malibu, Calif. The Waves are coached by former UH associate head coach Scott Wong. It is the first non-conference road match for UH since the 2013 season when the 'Bows competed in the Shocker Volleyball Classic hosted by Wichita State. The 'Bows will end the season at home with matches against the same two teams that they start the BWC slate with, taking on UC Irvine on Thursday, Nov. 15 and Senior Night will be against UC Davis on Friday, Nov. 16.
The 2017 Rainbow Wahine finished the season with a 20-8 overall record and finished second in the Big West with a 14-2 conference mark. The 'Bows competed in their 36th NCAA tournament where they lost in five sets to Illinois in the first round. Hawai'i return 11 letterwinners including four starters this coming season—including all-Big West first team players McKenna Granato and Norene Iosia.