The spring schedules were set for a couple of Pepperdine Waves sports teams that normally take to the field in the fall.
Last week, the West Coast Conference slates for the Waves’ women’s volleyball and women’s soccer teams were revealed by the conference. The volleyball team’s first match is on Jan. 26 and the soccer team’s first WCC contest is Feb. 20. Both squad’s seasons were delayed for months because of the novel coronavirus pandemic.
The volleyball team opens the season hosting San Francisco. The two teams will also square off the next day on the Waves’ homecourt. In order to easily comply with COVID-19 testing protocols and benefit scheduling needs, the WCC teams will play the same team on back-to-back days.
After hosting San Francisco, Pepperdine will play at Saint Mary’s on Feb. 2-3 and at Santa Clara Feb. 9-10. The Waves host Pacific on Feb. 16-17 and BYU on Feb. 23-24. The bunch hosts Gonzaga on March 5-6 and play at Portland on March 12-13. Pepperdine will host rival Loyola Marymount on March 19. The next day, Loyola Marymount will host the Waves in Los Angeles. Pepperdine’s final opponent is San Diego. They play at San Diego March 26-27.
The Waves finished the 2019 season with an 18-11 record. Pepperdine’s top returning players include AVCA All-Pacific South Region and All-WCC member Shannon Scully, an outside hitter, setter and opposite Isabel Zelaya, and Rachel Ahrens, an opposite and outside hitter. Zelaya was named to the WCC All-Freshman team in 2019 and Ahrens was an All-WCC team member.
The women’s soccer team has nine WCC games—all on Saturdays. The team hosts Santa Clara the first game of the season, then plays at Saint Mary’s on Feb. 27. The Waves host San Francisco on March 6 and play at Pacific on March 13 and at Portland seven days later. On March 27, Pepperdine hosts Loyola Marymount, then San Diego on April 3 and BYU on April 10. The team’s final contest is April 17 at Gonzaga.
The NCAA set Feb. 3 as the start date for women’s soccer. At press time, no non-conferences matchups had been set for Pepperdine. Selection for the NCAA tournament is the day after the Waves’ contest against Gonzaga.
Pepperdine qualified for the postseason event for the 11th time in program history in 2019. The team was defeated by Texas Tech in the first round. The Waves finished that season with an 11-6-3 record. Pepperdine returns eight starters from that team and 17 letter winnners, which includes the entire defensive back line and the top six goal scorers. The top returnees include forward Joelle Anderson and defenders Trinity Watson and Isabel Nelson, who all earned All-West Region and All-WCC honors.