|The Cal Poly Pomona men's basketball team for the 2002-03 season.|
After ending a 26-year drought, the Cal Poly Pomona men?s basketball team will test the postseason waters Friday night when it opens play in the 2003 NCAA Division II West Regional at Laie, Hawaii.
Boasting a 20-7 season record and a second place finish in the CCAA, the Broncos are the No. 4 seed in the eight-team, single-elimination regional. They will face the No. 5 seed, Alaska Fairbanks (20-7), in an 8 p.m. (PST) start at tournament host BYU-Hawaii?s Cannon Activities Center.
Those fans unable to make the trip can follow all the action as it happens thanks to a cybercast available on the athletic department?s Web page. Those interested can link to the site at www.cpp.edu/~athletic/Info/audiocast.html. The software needed to listen can be downloaded for free from that site. All of Cal Poly Pomona?s games in the West Regional will be cybercast live.
This year?s playoff berth is the first since the 1975-76 season for the Broncos and just the fourth in the men?s program history. It is also just the third 20-win season by a Bronco men?s team and the first since the 1980-81 campaign.
?This is a great accomplishment for this team, this program and these kids,? says Cal Poly Pomona head coach Greg Kamansky. ?These kids have really earned their way into the playoffs. It?s not easy to do what they?ve done.?
While the importance of the achievement isn?t lost on the players, they?re also not ready to settle for simply reaching the postseason.
?We?re really excited to be going, but at the same time we also want to go out there and prove ourselves,? says sophomore guard/forward David Sybesma. ?I know when I first got here, not a lot of people knew how long it had been since we?d been to the playoffs. Twenty-six years. Most of us weren?t even born then.?
Friday?s other first-round pairings have No. 3 seed Humboldt State (22-5) taking on No. 6 Hawaii-Hilo, CCAA champion and No., 2 seed Cal State San Bernardino (21-6) facing No. 7 Sonoma State (18-9), and No. 8 Cal State Bakersfield (19-8) challenging regional host and No. 1 seed BYU-Hawaii (19-3).
A win over Alaska Fairbanks advances the Broncos to Saturday?s regional semifinal, where they would face the winner of Friday?s BYU-Hawaii/Cal State Bakersfield showdown in a 9:30 p.m. (PST) start. The regional title game will be played at 9 p.m. (PST) Monday, with that winner advancing to the NCAA Division II Elite 8 March 26-29 at Lakeland, Fla.
For the latest updates on all Bronco athletic teams and events, go to www.cpp.edu/~athletic or call (909) 869-2812. For tournament brackets and the latest playoff scores and information, visit the NCAA Web site at www.ncaasports.com. Tournament brackets can also be accessed at polycentric.cpp.edu/ncaa1.