Loyola Marymount, who has won the last four Western Water Polo Association championships, claimed nine first-place votes in the 2011 WWPA Preseason Coaches Poll to be tabbed as the favorite for the upcoming season that gets into full swing over the Labor Day weekend.

The Lions earn 119 points in the poll to be the favorite to repeat their 2007, 2008, 2009 and 2010 titles, as voted on by the 12 head coaches of the WWPA (coaches cannot vote for their own team). UC Davis earned one first place vote and 107 points to earn second place while UC San Diego had two first-place votes and 102 points to place third. Santa Clara rounded out the top-four with 92 points.

Rounding out the rest of the poll was Air Force (79 points) at No. 5, Redlands (65) at No. 6, Claremont (64) at No. 7 and Pomona-Pitzer (60) at No. 8, followed by Whittier, Chapman, Occidental and La Verne.

The top four seeds based on the regular season will earn byes in the 2011 WWPA Championships held Nov. 17 - Nov. 20 at UC-San Diego. The annual tournament has been expanded by a day and will begin on Thursday with four first round games that will see No. 5 play No. 12, No. 6 taking on No. 11, No. 7 facing No. 10 and No. 8 playing No. 9. The winners will then face the top four seeds in the quarterfinals on Nov. 18. The championship game is slated for Nov. 20.

2011 WWPA PRESEASON COACHES POLL
Rank Team Points (First-Place Votes)
1 Loyola Marymount 118 (9)
2 UC-Davis 107 (1)
3 UC-San Diego 102 (2)
4 Santa Clara 92
5 Air Force 79
6 Redlands 65
7 Claremont 64
8 Pomona-Pitzer 60
9 Whittier 40
10 Chapman 27
11 Occidental 23
12 La Verne 15