Dominican Penguins

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search
Dominican Penguins
UniversityDominican University of California
ConferencePacific West Conference
NCAADivision II
Athletic directorAmy Henkelman
LocationSan Rafael, California
Varsity teams11
Basketball arenaConlan Center
MascotChilly the Penguin
ColorsBlack, Ice, and Gold[1]

The Dominican Penguins are the 11 varsity athletics teams that represent Dominican University of California, located in San Rafael, California, in NCAA Division II sports. The Penguins compete as members of the Pacific West Conference. The university became a full member of NCAA Division II in 2011.[2][3]

Varsity sports teams[edit]


The Conlan Center opened in 2000 and is home to the Dominican Volleyball and Basketball teams. It also features a swimming pool, weight room, office, and other athletics facilities. The John F. Allen Athletics Complex opened in 2012 and boasts Kennelly Field and the Castellucci Family Tennis Center. In 2015, the construction of Penguin Field provided an on-campus home to the Softball team for the first time and completed the John F. Allen Athletics Complex.[4]


In 2008 Dominican began a transition to NCAA Division II membership[5] and in 2009 joined the Pacific West Conference.[6] The move put the Penguins in the same conference as fellow Bay Area rivals Notre Dame de Namur University and the Academy of Art University.

Dominican men's golf became the first team to reach a regional with the 2015 NCAA Division II Men's Golf Championships. The Penguins finished in eighth place out of 20 teams and missed the national tournament by six strokes.[7]

Dominican's student-athletes won the PacWest's "Community Engagement Award" for their community service initiatives in 2009. Dominican earned the PacWest Academic Achievement Award for six consecutive seasons (2009-2015) for achieving the highest overall student-athlete GPA of all schools in the Pacific West Conference.[8][9]

Prior to becoming a member of the NCAA, Dominican was a member of NAIA Division II. The Penguins won four consecutive California Pacific Conference men's basketball championships from 2003 to 2006, then again in 2008. Men's basketball also reached the NAIA Championships four consecutive years from 2003 to 2006 and advanced to the Sweet 16 in 2005.[10] Women's basketball reached the Sweet 16 in 2004 and also qualified for the tournament the following season. Women's basketball was the National Small College Runner Up in 1995-96.[11]


Chilly the Mascot is the Penguins' mascot and has seen several costumed iterations, from inflatable to sporting a top hat to his current "buff" state. The Dominican mascot has been the Penguins since the student body voted to change the school's nickname to honor the Dominican Sisters in the mid-1970s.[12] Chilly was named the Mascot of the Month in May 2015 by[13]

Men's lacrosse[edit]

Dominican also sponsors Men's Lacrosse, which plays in the Men's Collegiate Lacrosse Association Division I. Previously, the Penguins participated in the NCAA Division II and were a founding member of the Western Intercollegiate Lacrosse Association, the first association west of the Mississippi River. Dominican won the WILA in 2013 and 2014 before transitioning to the MCLA for the 2015 season.


  1. ^ "Colors — Dominican University of California Visual Identity". Retrieved April 17, 2017.
  2. ^ Pickle, David (July 13, 2011). "Five new active members join Division II". NCAA. Archived from the original on July 16, 2011. Retrieved July 17, 2011.
  3. ^ "Dominican Athletics Announces 2010-11 Schedules" at, 2010-07-26. Accessed 2011-09-19.
  4. ^ "Quick Facts". Dominican Athletics #penguinpride. Retrieved 2015-10-22.
  5. ^ "NCAA grants Dominican athletics "provisional" status". Dominican University of California. July 2010. Retrieved July 17, 2011.
  6. ^ "Dominican wins PacWest Community Engagement award". Dominican University of California. Retrieved July 17, 2011.
  7. ^ "Penguins miss national tournament by six strokes". Dominican Athletics #penguinpride. Retrieved 2015-10-22.
  8. ^ "Dominican wins PacWest Community Engagement award". Dominican University of California. Retrieved May 22, 2013.
  9. ^ "Dominican receives sixth consecutive PacWest Academic Achievement Award". Dominican Athletics #penguinpride. Retrieved 2015-10-22.
  10. ^ "Dominican University of California Athletics - Hall of Fame". Retrieved 2015-10-22.
  11. ^ "Dominican ranked No. 7 in NAIA". SFGate. Retrieved 2015-10-22.
  12. ^ "Dominican Athletics — Dominican University of California". Retrieved 2015-10-22.
  13. ^ "". Retrieved 2015-10-22. External link in |title= (help)

External links[edit]