The Pomona-Pitzer Women’s Water Polo team has established itself as one of the nation's best NCAA Division III programs. The Sagehens made five NCAA Championship appearances in a seven-year span (2007-13), facing UCLA and Stanford in the opening round twice apiece and USC once, and then met UC San Diego in a play-in match in 2014.
Current head caoch Alex Rodriguez took over an already successful program in 2006 and led Pomona-Pitzer to its five NCAA bids over his first eight seasons. The Sagehens picked up three NCAA Tournament wins in that span, including a 13-12 win over No. 20 Iona at Harvard in 2013, when they came back from a 12-8 deficit to with four minutes left to win on a goal at the buzzer.
Before the SCIAC champion began earning automatic bids to the NCAA Tournament, the Sagehens captured the Division III National Championship in 1992, 1993, 2003 and 2005 (the tournament was not affiliated with the NCAA). Pomona-Pitzer has finished with the top ranking in NCAA Division III Women's Water Polo five times since.
The team trains at Haldeman pool, a beautiful 50-meter Olympic-size facility. The season starts January 15 and lasts until the SCIAC Tournament in late April, followed by the NCAA championships in mid-May. The Sagehens play over 30 matches a year against teams from Division I, II, and III insitutions, frequently testing themselves against teams in the top five in the nation in Division I.
The women’s water polo program has had its share of elite athletes come through the program. Amber Drury ’95, is a former United States National team member who led the Sagehens to their first two Division III titles in 1992 and 1993. Joy Haviland ’03 was a four-time first-team All-SCIAC member, four-time All-American, 2002 SCIAC Player of the year, the 2003 ACWPC Division III Player of the Year, and the 2003 Pomona-Pitzer Female Athlete of the Year.
In addition, Tamara Parea '11 earned the ACWPC Division III Player of the Year award in 2010 and 2011 after graduating with a school-record 265 goals, while Annie Oxborough-Yankus '12 shared it in 2012 and Sarah Tuggy '13 captured it in 2013.