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BRIDGEPORT, Pa. —  The Collegiate Water Polo Association (CWPA) will return to “Rocket City” for the second time during the 2021-22 academic year as the Huntsville Aquatics Center in Huntsville, Alabama, will serve as the site for the 2022 Women’s National Collegiate Club Championship on Friday-Sunday, May 6-8.

It marks the second National Collegiate Club Championship hosted by Huntsville in 2021-22 as Michigan State University claimed the 2021 Men’s National Collegiate Club Championship during the fall on November 12-14, 2021. 

Further, this marks the second time one site will host both the men’s and women’s National Collegiate Club Championship in the same calendar year as the University of California-Santa Cruz hosted the 2015 men’s and 2016 women’s championships in Santa Cruz, Calif.

The 16-team club championship tournament is the largest collegiate water polo championship in the nation.  Unlike the 2021 Men’s National Collegiate Club Championship, the 2022 women’s event does not feature a host institution as the University of Alabama – which hosted the 2021 men’s championship – is unable to compete.

Rather, the champions of the Atlantic, Big Ten, Mid-Atlantic, Midwest, New England, North Atlantic, Northwest, Pacific Coast, Rocky Mountain, Sierra Pacific, Southeast, Southwest and Texas Divisions will earn their division’s automatic berths to the event. 

Courtesy the New York Division not competing in 2022, the lack of a host institution and the Heartland Division Champion attending the 2022 Women’s Division III Collegiate Club Championship on April 30-May 1 at Middlebury College, the final three spots in the 16-team field are awarded based on the highest finishing divisions from the most recently completed Women’s National Collegiate Club Championship.  Due to the University of Florida of the Southeast Division defeating the University of California-Davis of the Sierra Pacific Division by a 4-3 score on May 5, 2019, at the University of Notre Dame’s Rolfs Aquatic Center in Notre Dame, Ind., the runner-up teams from the Southeast and Sierra Pacific Divisions claim spots in the field.  The final slot is awarded to the runner-up from the Southwest Division as San Diego State University claimed Third Place in 2019.

Teams will be seeded based on a policy voted in during the 2008 CWPA Annual Meeting: “The teams are seed based on a policy voted in during the 2008 Annual Meeting. The seeding rule states: The top eight division winners will be seeded according to their division’s finish the prior season. Places nine and ten will be reserved for the top two division runnerups in order of their division’s finish. The remaining places will be filled with the divisions according to their division’s finish the prior season, with random draws used to break ties in placing.”

A finalized bracket is anticipated to be released on Wednesday, March 30.

In the history of the championship, the University of Washington (2000), Michigan State (2001, 2002, 2006), California Polytechnic State University (2003, 2004, 2005, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011), Fresno State University (2007), UC-Davis (2012, 2013, 2017, 2018), San Diego State (2014 University), the University of California (2015), the University of California-Santa Barbara (2016) and Florida (2019) have previously claimed titles.

For fans unable to make the event, the CWPA will provide live, pay-per-view streaming of all 30 games on the league’s Stretch Internet channel at www.CWPTV.com. Additional information on the streaming will be released in the coming weeks.

Additional information on Huntsville/”Rocket City” – the moniker given to Huntsville as Wernher von Braun and his team of fellow German-born rocketeers settled there in the 1950s and the city is home to the United States Army’s Redstone Arsenal and NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center – is available on the Huntsville & Madison County Convention & Visitors Bureau website at https://www.huntsville.org/.

Previous Women’s National Collegiate Club Championship Hosts (2000-to-Present)
2000 – University of Arizona (Tucson, Ariz.)
2001 – Miami University of Ohio (Oxford, Ohio)
2002 – Emory University (Atlanta, Ga.)
2003 – Carthage College (Kenosha, Wisc.)
2004 – California Polytechnic State University (San Luis Obispo, Calif.)
2005 – Texas A&M University (College Station, Texas)
2006 – Northwestern University (Evanston, Ill.)
2007 – Williams College (Williamstown, Mass.)
2008 – University of Oregon (Mt. Hood Aquatic Center, Gresham, Ore.)
2009 – University of California-Davis (Davis, Calif.)
2010 – University of Arizona (Tucson, Ariz.)
2011 – University of Notre Dame (Notre Dame, Ind.)
2012 – Florida State University (Tallahassee, Fla.)
2013 – University of Minnesota (Minneapolis, Minn.)
2014 – The Ohio State University (SPIRE Institute, Geneva, Ohio)
2015 – Middlebury College (Middlebury, Vt.)
2016 – University of California-Santa Cruz (Santa Cruz, Calif.)
2017 – University of Pittsburgh (Pittsburgh, Pa.)
2018 – University of Washington (Mt. Hood Aquatic Center, Gresham, Ore.)
2019 – University of Notre Dame (Notre Dame, Ind.)
2020 – None (COVID-19)
2021 – None (COVID-19)

Previous Men’s National Collegiate Club Championship Hosts (2000-to-Present)
2000 – University of Washington (King County Aquatic Center, Federal Way, Wash.)
2001 – University of Florida (Gainesville, Fla.)
2002 – California Polytechnic State University (San Luis Obispo, Calif.)
2003 – Texas A&M University (College Station, Texas)
2004 – University of Notre Dame (Notre Dame, Ind.)
2005 – Williams College (Williamstown, Mass.)
2006 – Miami University of Ohio (Oxford, Ohio)
2007 – University of Arizona (Tucson, Ariz.)
2008 – Ohio University (Athens, Ohio)
2009 – University of Florida (Gainesville, Fla.)
2010 – Southern Utah University (Cedar City, Utah)
2011 – Georgia Institute of Technology (Atlanta, Ga.)
2012 – Oregon State University (Osborn Aquatic Center, Corvallis, Ore.)
2013 – University of California-San Diego (La Jolla, Calif.)
2014 – University of Utah (Kearns Oquirrh Park Fitness Center, Kearns, Utah)
2015 – University of California-Santa Cruz (Santa Cruz, Calif.)
2016 – University of Notre Dame (Notre Dame, Ind.)
2017 – Florida State University (Tallahassee, Fla.)
2018 – University of Arizona (Tucson, Ariz.)
2019 – University of Pittsburgh (Pittsburgh, Pa)
2020 – None – COVID-19
2021 – University of Alabama (Huntsville Aquatic Center, Huntsville, Ala.)

Previous Women’s National Collegiate Club Champions (2000-to-Present)
2000 – University of Washington def. Michigan State University
2001 – Michigan State University def. University of Florida
2002 – Michigan State University def. California Polytechnic State University
2003 – California Polytechnic State University def. Michigan State University
2004 – California Polytechnic State University def. Dartmouth College
2005 – California Polytechnic State University def. Dartmouth College
2006 – Michigan State University def. University of Florida
2007 – Fresno State University def. California Polytechnic State University
2008 – California Polytechnic State University def. University of Oregon
2009 – California Polytechnic State University def. University of Notre Dame
2010 – California Polytechnic State University def. University of Michigan
2011 – California Polytechnic State University def. University of California-Davis
2012 – University of California-Davis def. California Polytechnic State University
2013 – University of California-Davis def. University of Central Florida
2014 – San Diego State Univerrsity def. University of Michigan
2015 – University of California def. University of Notre Dame
2016 – University of California-Santa Barbara def. University of Michigan
2017 – University of California-Davis def. California Polytechnic State University
2018 – University of California-Davis def. California Polytechnic State University
2019 – University of Florida def. University of California-Davis
2020 – Season terminated – COVID-19
2021 – No competition – COVID-19

Previous Men’s National Collegiate Club Champions (1993-to-Present)
1993 – Northwestern University def. University of Maryland
1994 – United States Military Academy def. University of Dayton
1995 – University of Dayton def. United States Military Academy
1996 – University of Michigan def. University of Arizona
1997 – Dartmouth College def. University of Colorado
1998 – University of Michigan def. Pennsylvania State University
1999 – California Polytechnic State University def. University of Richmond
2000 – Michigan State University def. University of Washington
2001 – California Polytechnic State University def. Villanova University
2002 – California Polytechnic State University def. University of Southern California
2003 – University of Michigan def. California Polytechnic State University
2004 – California Polytechnic State University def. University of Arizona
2005 – Grand Valley State University def. Michigan State University
2006 – Michigan State University def. Grand Valley State University
2007 – California Polytechnic State University def. Michigan State University
2008 – Michigan State University def. California Polytechnic State University
2009 – University of California-Los Angeles def. Florida International University
2010 – University of California-Los Angeles def. University of Texas
2011 – University of Southern California def. Yale University
2012 – University of Southern California def. University of California
2013 – University of California-Los Angeles def. Lindenwood University
2014 – Lindenwood University def. San Diego State University
2015 – Lindenwood University def. San Diego State University
2016 – Lindenwood University def. Long Beach State University
2017 – San Diego State University def. University of Texas
2018 – Lindenwood University def. University of Utah
2019 – Lindenwood University def. University of Southern California
2020 – No competition – COVID-19
2021 – Michigan State University def. University of California-San Diego

 

Collegiate Water Polo Association