With 6 titles in inaugural PacWest season, California Baptist claims Commissioner’s Cup
PHOENIX, AZ – California Baptist University claimed championships in six different sports to capture the 2011-12 Pacific West Conference Commissioner’s Cup during its inaugural season in the league.
“I’m very proud of our coaches and athletes for earning this accomplishment,” Dr. Micah Parker, California Baptist’s director of athletics, said. “CBU student-athletes had a chance to experience NCAA Division II athletics at a high level with the opportunity to compete for PacWest Conference championships. Many of those conference races went down to the last week of competition - which makes things very exciting. We hope to continue to honor Christ through excellence in athletics.”
The Lancers won outright titles in baseball, softball, men’s and women’s cross country and women’s soccer, and shared a PacWest championship in men’s soccer.
The race for the Commissioner’s Cup is based upon average finish instead of total points, a change that occurred prior to the 2009-10 campaign. Each school totals its points and then divides it by the number of PacWest athletic programs it sponsors, giving an overall average finish for the school.
Across its athletic program, CBU produced an average finish of 8.950 - or second place - and totaled 89.5 points in 10 sports. The Lancers do not sponsor women’s tennis.
“The strength of the athletic programs in the PacWest has increased tremendously,” Bob Hogue, commissioner of the conference, stated. “Congratulations goes out to California Baptist University which had an outstanding season and a tremendous impact on the PacWest.”
California Baptist becomes the first Mainland-based institution in the five years of the Commissioner’s Cup to win the all-sports title. Schools based in Hawai‘i have claimed the four previous cups, including Hawai‘i Pacific that captured the championship the last two years. BYU-Hawaii won the cup in 2008-09 and Hawai‘i Hilo claimed the crown in 2007-08.
In addition to the six titles CBU won this year, the Lancers also finished second in women’s basketball, tied for third in volleyball, placed fourth in men’s golf and tied for fourth in men’s basketball.
Grand Canyon University continued its step-by-step progression up the Commissioner’s Cup ladder by finishing second this season – its best finish since the inception of the cup in 2007-08. The Antelopes placed fifth in each of the first two years of the program before taking fourth in 2009-10 and third place last season.
This year Grand Canyon won titles in women’s basketball and men’s golf, finished second in women’s soccer and women’s volleyball, and grabbed third place in women’s tennis, men’s soccer, softball, women’s cross country and men’s basketball. GCU totaled 91 points in 11 sports and finished with an of 8.273 – or just over third place as a program.
GCU also made the biggest jump of any program in terms of total points (70.5 to 91.0) and in average finish (6.409 to 8.273).
For the fifth straight year, Brigham Young University Hawaii finished in the Top 3 of the Commissioner’s Cup chase after taking third place this season. The Seasiders also finished third in 2009-10, placed second in 2010-11 and 2007-08, and won the cup in 2008-09.
This season BYU-Hawaii had an average finish of fourth place (6.900) across its entire athletic program after totaling 69 points in 10 sports. The Seasiders do not compete in the sport of baseball.
BYU-Hawaii won conference titles in women’s tennis and women’s volleyball, placed second in men’s basketball and women’s cross country, and recorded third-place finishes in men’s cross country and women’s soccer. The Seasiders also improved their point total from 64.5 and their average finish from 6.450 over last season.
For the second straight year, Dixie State College of Utah finished fourth, but the Red Storm increased its point total from 69.5 to 74 and its average finish from 6.318 to 6.727 over 2010-11. The Red Storm – which sponsors teams in all 11 sports - won the PacWest men’s basketball title, placed second in men’s golf, baseball and softball, and grabbed third in women’s hoops.
The growing strength of the PacWest was illustrated in the finish of Hawai‘i Pacific University which took fifth this year after winning the title the last two seasons. HPU totaled 75 points and a 6.818 average in 2010-11. This year its average dipped slightly to 6.455 after compiling 71 points in 11 sports. HPU shared the PacWest men’s soccer title, finished second in women’s tennis, took fourth in softball, baseball, women’s soccer and women’s cross country, and shared fourth in women’s hoops.
The University of Hawai‘i at Hilo finished sixth this season, totaling 45.5 points and an average finish of 4.550. The Vulcans took third in men’s golf and tied for third in women’s volleyball.
Academy of Art University grabbed seventh place with a 4.318 average (47.5 points), while Notre Dame de Namur University was eighth with a 3.800 mark (38.0 points).
Art U’s best finish was in men’s cross country where the Urban Knights took second, and in women’s tennis where Art U placed fourth. Academy of Art also tied for fourth in women’s hoops.
NDNU’s top finish occurred in men’s soccer where the Argos grabbed fourth place. They increased their point total from 35 to 38 and their average finish from 3.500 to 3.800.
Chaminade University of Honolulu finished ninth with 27.5 points and a 2.750 average, while Dominican University of California took 10th with 26.0 points and a 2.600 average.
Chaminade’s top finish came in men’s basketball and men’s cross country where the Silverswords placed sixth. The Penguins, meanwhile, tied for fourth in men’s basketball to collect their highest point total in any one sport.
In 2012-13, the Pacific West Conference will adjust the process of selecting its Commissioner’s Cup standings to reflect the addition of four new institutions and four new sports.