POSTED: 1:30 a.m. HST, Jun 2, 2011
The Pacific West Conference, which includes Hawaii Pacific, Chaminade, Brigham Young-Hawaii and University of Hawaii-Hilo, plans to expand to 14 members beginning in the 2012-13 school year, the conference announced Wednesday. That would make it the largest NCAA Division II athletic conference in the West.
California schools Azusa Pacific, Fresno Pacific, Holy Names and Point Loma Nazarene will join the PacWest, which will have teams in four states. The new members are all part of the NAIA and met the June 1 deadline to apply for NCAA D-II status. Upon acceptance, teams will be eligible for conference championships and awards in their first year of competition, expected to be 2012-13.
Azusa Pacific has won the last six Directors' Cup championships at the NAIA level. The Cup recognizes the combined success of all its athletic programs. Azusa Pacific, which claims Hawaii Olympic gold medalist Bryan Clay as an alumnus, could win a seventh Directors' Cup later this month. It had participants in national championships in 16 of its 17 sports last season.
Fresno Pacific has won 11 NAIA national titles, including four straight in women's volleyball.
The PacWest has 11 sports and will add men's tennis and women's golf in 2012-13.