Half of the field for the 2012 NCAA water polo tournament were claimed on Sunday afternoon. St. Francis, out of the Collegiate Water Polo Association, needed overtime to defeat Bucknell 10-9. This will be St. Francis' third trip to the NCAA tournament, and their first since 2010.
The other team to qualify for the NCAA tournament is Air Force out of the Western Water Polo Association, and the Falcons defeated UC San Diego 9-7 on Sunday to move on. Air Force had lost three games this year to UCSD, but they were able to get the win by having a big fourth quarter to put away UCSD.
The other two spots will be occupied by two teams from the Mountain Pacific Sports Federation. The MPSF has their own auto-bid, but the single at-large spot will also come from their league. Their conference tournament begins on Friday Nov. 23 and go through Nov. 25, and it is being played at McDonald's Swim Stadium, which is on the campus of USC.
No. 1 ranked USC is almost a certainty to get a bid to the NCAA tournament, even if the don't win the conference tournament. However, the MPSF has been full of surprises this year, but the at-large team is likely to be UCLA.
Their only league loss came to USC this past weekend, and barring any major upsets with USC not winning the conference tournament, or UCLA, the second MPSF team will not be UCLA.