Inside Water #1: Wolverines Kick Off 2011 with Home Tournament

Jan. 17, 2011

Important Parking Information

MICHIGAN KICK-OFF (Tournament Central)
Saturday, Jan. 22, 11:45 a.m. -- vs. No. 15 Cal State - Northridge (Canham Natatorium)
Live Blog |
Saturday, Jan. 22, 6 p.m. -- vs. No. 7 San Jose State (Canham Natatorium)
Live Blog |
Sunday, Jan. 23, 11 a.m. -- vs. No. 4 UCLA (Canham Natatorium) | TV: Big Ten Network (Live)
Sunday, Jan. 23, 2:40 p.m. -- vs. No. 1 Stanford (Canham Natatorium)
Live Blog |

The No. 8-ranked University of Michigan water polo team (0-0-0) inaugurates the 2011 season with the sixth annual Michigan Kick-Off on Jan. 22-23 at Canham Natatorium. The Wolverines will begin their quest for a fourth consecutive NCAA Championship bid with No. 15-ranked Cal State Northridge (0-0-0) at 11:45 a.m. on Saturday (Jan. 22) followed by a nightcap with No. 7-ranked San Jose State at 6 p.m. The Big Ten Network will put the spotlight on U-M's showdown with No. 4 UCLA on Sunday (Jan. 24) at 11 a.m., airing the game live to a national television audience. The Wolverines will close out a busy opening weekend with the nation's top ranked team, Stanford, at 2:40 p.m. Every team in this season's Michigan Kick-Off received votes in the Varsity Top 20 Preseason Poll with Colorado State being the only participant not to crack the rankings.

• Michigan Kick-Off Schedule (Tournament Central)

Saturday, Jan. 22
8 a.m. -- #4 UCLA vs. Colorado State
9:15 a.m. -- #14 Hartwick vs. #1 Stanford
10:30 a.m. -- #13 Indiana vs. #6 Loyola Marymount
11:45 a.m. -- #8 Michigan vs. #15 Cal State - Northridge
1 p.m. -- Colorado State vs. #7 San Jose State
2:30 p.m. -- #14 Hartwick vs. #4 UCLA
3:40 p.m. -- #13 Indiana vs. #15 Cal State - Northridge
4:50 p.m. -- #6 Loyola Marymount vs. #1 Stanford
6 p.m. -- #8 Michigan vs. #7 San Jose State
7:15 p.m. -- Colorado State vs. #13 Indiana

Sunday, Jan. 23
7:15 a.m. -- #7 San Jose State vs. #14 Hartwick
8:25 a.m. -- #6 Loyola Marymount vs. #15 Cal State - Northridge
9:35 a.m. -- #13 Indiana vs. #1 Stanford
11 a.m. -- #8 Michigan vs. #4 UCLA
12:20 p.m. -- #14 Hartwick vs. Colorado State
1:30 p.m. -- #6 Loyola Marymount vs. #7 San Jose State
2:40 p.m. -- #8 Michigan vs. #1 Stanford
3:50 p.m. -- #4UCLA vs. #15 Cal State - Northridge

Teams listed first will wear dark caps and are home on the scoreboard.

U-M at the Michigan Kick-Off -- Michigan owns a 27-12-1 record when hosting the Michigan Kick-Off/Invitational. The Kick-Off, originally tabbed as the Michigan Invitational and renamed in 2006, has been held at Canham Natatorium since 2002. The Wolverines are 13-12-1 against ranked opponents at the tournament and have knocked off a trio of No. 7-ranked teams.

Quick Starters -- A trio of Michigan players have made a habit of jump starting the season with strong performances at the Michigan Kick-Off. Senior Alison Mantel (Miami, Fla./Gulliver) is U-M's active leader at the tournament, netting 13 goals and 21 points. Senior Cara Reitz (Miami, Fla./Gulliver) boasts 11 goals and 14 points at the annual tournament and sophomore Lauren Colton (Tustin, Calif./Tesoro) made a big splash with 10 points in her Michigan Kick-Off debut a season ago.

We Have a Great Pool in our Backyard -- The friendly confines of Canham Natatorium will play host to the U-M season opener for the 10th straight campaign and will host the NCAA Championship for the second time. Michigan is 6-4 all-time in home openers and 7-3 in season openers. The Wolverines are 77-20-1 all-time at Canham, including an 11-1 record last season.

Nine Times? Nine Times -- The Wolverines captured their ninth consecutive CWPA crown last season when they defeated Indiana in the 2010 CWPA Western Division Championship. Only men's tennis (16, 1968-83), women's swimming and diving (12, 1987-98) and men's swimming and diving (10, 1986-95) have enjoyed a better stretch of success at Michigan.

TV Stars -- The Big Ten Network will broadcast two Michigan water polo contests to a national television audience during the 2011 campaign. The Maize and Blue will be featured live this weekend when it takes on UCLA on Jan. 23 and again when it travels to Indiana on March 26. Michigan claimed a 6-4 victory over Indiana when the network aired its first-ever water polo game on April 3, 2010, in front of the largest crowd ever inside Canham Natatorium.

Rank and File -- Michigan earned the No. 8 ranking in the 2011 Women's Varsity Preseason Top 20 poll and with the No. 1 ranking in the Collegiate Water Polo Association's Top 10 poll, both released released Jan. 12. The selection marks U-M's fifth in the preseason top 10 spot nationally and matched the program- and conference-best No. 8 ranking set by the 2006 Wolverines. Michigan finished seventh in the final poll of 2010 after reaching a program-record No. 5 ranking in three polls from Feb. 10-24, 2010. [ Complete Poll ]

Goaltending Experience -- Michigan enters the 2011 season with a strong stable of experienced goaltenders. Sophomore Alex Adamson (Coronado, Calif./Coronado) earned CWPA All-Western Division first team honors as the team's starting goalie a year ago, posting a 17-3 record in 28 games. Junior Morgan Turner (Mission Viejo, Calif./Trabuco Hills) ranks second on the U-M career save percentage (.616) and goals-against average (5.84) lists and is 16-2 in her career. Adamson and Turner both boast NCAA Championship experience, while junior Tara Brigham (Baytown, Texas/Sterling) has appeared in two U-M shutouts. All three netminders are undefeated at Canham Natatorium in their careers.

Senioritis -- This 2011 seniors should have no problem becoming the winingest class in program history, entering their fourth year together with a 102-28 record. The class of 2010 wrapped up their careers with a 126-44 record, the current program standard, and shared in three-consecutive 30-win seasons with the current crop of seniors.

Help Me Alison -- Alison Mantel is on pace to become the all-time assists leader sometime in February. Mantel, who set the single-season assist record with 50 helpers in 2010, has needs 12 assists to reach Erin Brown's (2002-05) record of 133. The Wolverine senior has averaged 0.95 assists-per-game in her career, entering the season with 121.

AA-Squared -- For the third straight season and fourth time in program history, Michigan returns multiple players recognized by the AWPCA for their play in the pool. Alison Mantel and sophomore Kiki Golden (Danville, Calif./Monte Vista) earned All-America honorable mention during the 2010 campaign. In each case, the returning All-Americans earned repeat selections.

Leaders and Best -- Senior Cara Reitz (Miami, Fla./Gulliver) and junior Meagan Cobb (Hudsonville, Mich./Hudsonville) will represent the Wolverines as captains for the 2011 season. Reitz will be serving as captain for the second time in her career.

Chasing 300 -- Michigan needs 19 wins to become the first program in the modern era to reach 300 victories. The Wolverines have averaged 28.1 wins per season through their first 10 years in existence. The modern era of water polo began in 2001 with the establishment of an NCAA-sanctioned championship.

Winningest Programs In The Modern Era
Michigan 281-113-1
UCLA 258-37
Southern Cal 254-39
Stanford 241-38

• Cal State Northridge
   Series: U-M leads 5-1
   Last Meeting: 6-9, L (2/21/09 - Newport Beach, Calif.)
• San Jose State
   Series: U-M trails 4-6
   Last Meeting: 3-10, L (2/28/10 - Irvine, Calif.)
   Series: U-M trails 0-7
   Last Meeting: 6-9, L (5/16/10 - San Diego, Calif. -- NCAA Championship)
• Stanford
   Series: U-M trails 0-8
   Last Meeting: 5-12, L (2/6/10 - Palo Alto, Calif.)

Top Returnees: 2010 Final Statistics

Name GP G A P
Alison Mantel 41 56 50 106
Lauren Orth 41 47 38 85
Kiki Golden 41 39 29 68

Name GP Steals
Kiki Golden 41 78
Cara Reitz 41 59
Ryley Plunkett 41 46

Name GP W-L Blks GAA SV%
Alex Adamson 28 17-3 147 6.25 .555
Morgan Turner 15 9-2 99 6.81 .576

Point Streaks
Alison Mantel -- eight games (10 goals, 10 assists)
Kiki Golden -- eight games (six goals, eight assists)
Lauren Orth -- six games (12 goals, six assists)

Goals Streaks
Alison Mantel -- eight games (10 goals)
Lauren Orth -- five games (12 goals)

Alison Mantel needs 12 assists to tie Erin Brown (133, 2002-05) for the program career record.

• Mantel needs eight steals to match Terri Bukofzer (156, 2007-10) for seventh on the all-time list.

Sarah Roberts needs to draw seven ejections to match Wesley Ellison (96, 2004-07) for sixth on the all-time liste.

Lauren Orth needs one goal to match Mary Chatigny (116, 2006-09) for ninth on the all-time list.

Cara Reitz needs one goal to become the 13th Wolverine to reach 100 markers on her career.

Morgan Turner needs two saves to tie Camille Clarendon (179, 2001) for fourth on the career list.

Alex Adamson needs 20 saves to tie Sally Stone (167, 2005-06) for sixth on the all-time list.

• Adamson needs three wins and Turner four wins to become the fourth and fifth Wolverine goalkeepers to reach the 20-win plateau in their careers.

Every Wednesday, MGoBlue will offer insider access to the Michigan water polo program in the Five Good Meters audio podcast. Players and coaches will touch on topics ranging from road trips, Michigan's opponents, strategy and the other events of the season in each weekly feature. Check out the latest episode on or subscribe to Michigan Athletics on iTunes.

Michigan water polo enters its third season on Twitter. Sign up and follow the Wolverines (Michigan_wpolo) with up-to-the-minute news and information throughout the season and beyond. Twitter is a free casual, online social network that is designed to connect businesses, organizations and individuals. Each Twitter post (or "tweet") can be received on a user's cell phone via text or on the web.

Beginning with the 2009-10 academic year, the University of Michigan athletics department ceased producing print media guides. U-M fans and media can still obtain all the information they're used to, only now it's available online. Each of our varsity athletic teams will have a Record Book and a Yearbook. If you're looking for in-depth historical information, statistics, records, archives, etc., the Record Book is what you'll need. For more of a general overview of a team, the staff and student-athletes, check out the Yearbook. Check them both out in our new publications section.

The national spotlight will return to Ann Arbor when the 2011 NCAA Championship comes to Canham Natatorium. The games will run May 13-15, 2011.With a seating capacity of 1,200 people, Canham Natatorium provided the stage for the 2005 NCAA Women's Water Polo Championship. The Wolverines placed sixth while playing in their home pool at the 2005 event.

Friday, Jan. 28 -- at UC Santa Barbara (Santa Barbara, Calif.), 11 a.m. PST
Friday, Jan. 28 -- vs. Concordia (Calif.) (Santa Barbara, Calif.), 1:30 p.m. PST
Sat-Sun., Jan. 29-30 -- at UCSB Winter Invitational (Santa Barbara, Calif.)

Contact: Ryan Sosin (734) 763-4423