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Wednesday, January 23 , 2019, 5:51 am | Fair 37º

Sports: A Noozhawk Partnership with Santa Barbara Athletic Round Table, The Lab, and American Riviera Bank
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Local Athletes, Coaches in NCAA Men’s Water Polo, Women’s Volleyball Tournaments

There’s local flavor in the NCAA Tournament for women’s volleyball and men’s water polo.

In water polo, five players on participating teams attended local high schools. 

Four teams in the women’s volleyball tournament have coaches who played in high school here and another is coached by a former UCSB men’s volleyball standout.

Illinois, the No. 3 seed in the 64-team volleyball tournament is coached by Laguna Blanca alum Chris Tamas. He guided the Fighting Illini to a 28-3 record in his second year at the helm.

Fourth-seeded BYU is guided by Carpinteria alum Heather Olmstead. The Cougars enter the tournament with a 27-1 record.

BYU’s only loss came against Loyola Marymount, which is coached by former UCSB star Aaron Mansfield. In only his second year. Mansfield guided the Lions to a 20-7 record, their first 20-win season since 2015.

Dos Pueblos alum Dan Fisher guided Pittsburgh to its third straight NCAA appearances. The Panthers are 29-1 and seeded 13th.

Mandy Bible is an assistant coach at St. Mary’s, where she had a standout career after graduating from San Marcos High.

The first two rounds of the women’s volleyball tournament are Thursday, Friday and Saturday.

The men’s water polo tournament includes players on the top two seeded teams. Dos Pueblos alum Blake Parrish is a senior at top-seeded Stanford while Sawyer Rhodes of Santa Barbara High is a sophomore at No. 2 USC. Both teams have byes into the semifinals on Saturday.

Three other former prep stars played on teams that were knocked out in Opening Round games. Miles Cole is on the Princeton team, which lost 14-13 in overtime against George Washington.

Dylan Elliott of Dos Pueblos and Adam Gross of Santa Barbara play for Pomona Pitzer. Elliott had a goal and three assist in a 12-5 loss to Long Beach State.

The final rounds of the NCAA Water Polo Tournament are Saturday and Sunday at Stanford.

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