Beginning in the 2014-15 season, the California State University, Stanislaus women’s tennis team will be facing new competition in a new conference.
The women’s tennis team will be joining the Pacific West Conference, the conference’s commissioner Bob Hogue announced Tuesday.
"Affiliate membership has proven to be a successful strategy with the addition of Sonoma State last year, and we welcome Cal State Stanislaus to make the PacWest a more dynamic and competitive Division II tennis conference," Hogue said. "We have experienced tremendous success with all of our programs in recent years, and the Warriors will help bring us to new heights."
Sonoma State’s men’s and women’s tennis programs joined the PacWest in 2013.
Cal State Stanislaus will be joining 12 other PacWest women’s tennis programs. The conference does not sponsor a conference schedule, but it does hold a conference tournament. The top-eight teams (based on ITA rankings) compete in the PacWest Championship tournament, with the winner receiving an automatic bid to the NCAA Championship.
Cal State Stanislaus is a member of the California Collegiate Athletics Association, but the conference stopped sponsoring tennis in 2012. Cal State Stanislaus athletics director Michael Matoso said the decision to join the PacWest was easy, due to the level of competition the conference provides.
"We are very excited to have our women's tennis team join the Pac West starting next season," Matoso said. "We thank Commissioner Hogue and the entire conference for allowing us this opportunity, and we look forward to once again compete at a conference tournament championship."
Women’s tennis at Cal State Stanislaus was reinstated in 2007 when the school hired head coach Verek Visaraga, a former men’s tennis star for the Warriors. The Warriors began CCAA play in 2008 and were instantly competitive, challenging the defending champions UC San Diego and finishing second in two consecutive years.
"I am happy to be a new member of the Pac West tennis conference," Visaraga said. "This conference has a great reputation of representing our region, as well at the national level. I am looking forward to this opportunity and the immediate impacts it will have on our recruiting and the strength of schedule for our tennis program."