THOUSAND OAKS, Calif. — Head women's basketball coach Lindsay Samaniego announced the Cal Lutheran Regals' upcoming 2018-19 slate, Thursday afternoon, featuring 15 home contests at Gilbert Arena, the Regals Classic and the team's first trip to the Miami Exclusive Invitational.
The program finished third in the conference standings last season with a 15-11 overall record and a 10-6 record in the Southern California Intercollegiate Athletic Conference, advancing to the SCIAC Tournament semifinals.
"The SCIAC is looking to be very competitive this season and I know our returners have a lot to prove. It's going to be an exciting season and I am looking forward to getting started in a couple weeks," said Samaniego.
The team opens the season with an exhibition against the Westmont Warriors in Santa Barbara on November 6 before returning home for a four-game stretch. They begin their preseason slate with George Fox on Nov. 11, the reigning Northwest Conference champions, who have reached the NCAA Division III the last six consecutive seasons, including two "Sweet 16" appearances and one "Final Four" appearance during that frame.
From there, the team plays three games within five days to wrap up the first home stretch. They play UC Santa Cruz on Saturday, Nov. 17, Master's College on the 19th and close against Willamette on the 21st.
"Our schedule is going to test us early by playing two top NAIA teams and opening our season with powerhouse George Fox. The hope is that it will help prepare us for those early SCIAC games."
Cal Lutheran closes November with their conference opener at Caltech on Wednesday the 28th, before heading to Whittier on December 1st. Last season, the Regals swept both contests against Caltech while splitting the series against Whittier. The Regals finally make their home conference debut on Dec. 5 against Chapman, who took both games in 2018.
The team then takes an interlude from SCIAC play during the holiday break, starting with a non-conference matchup against the Knox Prairie Fire from Galesburg, Illinois on December 14, before jetting off to the East Coast for the Miami Exclusive Invitational.
In Florida, the team faces off against the Babson Beavers on Tuesday December 18, who finished the regular season tied for first with a 13-3 record in the New England Women's and Men's Athletic Conference and made their way to the conference tournament semifinals. Two days later, the team takes the court against Thomas More on Dec. 20. The Saints went 30-2 overall in 2017-18, reaching the semifinals of the NCAA Tournament.
"We are fortunate to have the opportunity to travel to Miami this season and take on great competition. While in Miami, we are going to attend a Miami Heat game and volunteer at the local YMCA. We are looking forward to taking that trip and then returning home after the holiday to host our own tournament."
The Regals host William Smith and Whitworth (Wash.) in their annual holiday classic from Dec. 28-30. The William Smith Herons went 15-11 last year and 9-9 in the Liberty League, finishing sixth in the conference standings, while the Whitworth Pirates went 10-15 overall and 5-11 in the Northwest Conference.
Then it's back to SCIAC play on January 7th to start the new year, opening with a three-game road trip to Claremont-Mudd-Scripps, Redlands and Occidental. Although the Regals dropped both games last season to CMS, Cal Lutheran swept both Redlands and Occidental.
Cal Lutheran returns back to action inside Gilbert Arena on Monday, Jan. 14, with a three-game stay against Pomona-Pitzer, La Verne and Whittier. The purple and gold split with Pomona-Pitzer and took both games against La Verne last year.
Conference play all builds up to the SCIAC Postseason Tournament on Saturday, February 21, with the tournament champions earning an automatic qualifying bid into the NCAA Division III Tournament.
Full Schedule: 2018-19 Regals Basketball Schedule
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Release by Christy Effendie, Assistant Sports Information Director