Women's Basketball Selected Fourth in Preseason Coaches Poll
October 18, 2011
HIGH POINT, N.C. - The Barton College women's basketball team received the most points to earn the top spot in this year’s Conference Carolinas Preseason Coaches’ Poll. Each school’s head coach ranks teams from top to bottom for the entire league and this year’s poll had two different teams receiving first place votes. Barton collected eight first-place votes ahead of Limestone with four who finished second in the poll. Mount Olive rounded out the top tier with a third place finish as voted on by league coaches. Pfeiffer University came in just outside the top three in fourth.
After concluding a banner year last season that featured winning the Conference Carolinas regular season title, the 2011 Conference Carolinas Tournament and advancing to the second round of the NCAA Division II National Tournament, the Barton College women’s basketball team will be a target of excellence from all opposition throughout their Eastern Division, the entire league, and in the Southeast Region. The three-time reigning league champions wrapped up last season with a program-best 26-5 record after losing its last game to the eventual national champions Clayton State University. BC boasted an 18-2 record in league play.
The Lady Bulldogs are guided by 23rd year head coach Wendee Saintsing, who is the two-time reigning Conference Carolinas Coach of the Year. Saintsing returns a deep class of 12 letter winners featuring Second Team All-Conference/Freshman of the Year/ Tournament MVP Nyeshea Willie and Third Team All-Conference/Southeast Regional All-Tournament Team award winner Jannetta Robinson. Janae Jackson and Jolanda Mitchell also started in majority of last year’s games.
Coach Saintsing added five talented newcomers that all have a chance to crack the lineup and will be looking for one Lady Bulldog to step into the point guard position vacated by All-Region and First Team All-Conference honoree Jamila Johnson, who led the conference in assists and her team in scoring last year during her final senior season.
Mount Olive College may be in rebuilding mode in 2011-12 after graduating four starters, including the conference player of the year, from last year’s Conference Carolinas regular season and tournament runner-up. The Trojans do return All-Conference Carolinas forward/guard Andrea Jones, who ranked seventh in the conference in scoring with 14.7 points per game. Also returning are forward Alyssa Luebs and point guard Destinee Webb, both of whom have seen time in the starting lineup during their first two years at Mount Olive.
Mount Olive posted a 21-8 record last year, the Trojans’ third 20-win season in the last four years to finish second in the regular season standings. The Trojans won the 2008 Conference Carolinas Tournament and were runners-up in the 2009 & 2010 tournament championships.
Rounding out the ladies poll 4-12 was: Pfeiffer, Belmont Abbey & Queens (tied), Erskine, King & North Greenville (tied), Coker, Lees-McRae, and Converse respectively.
WOMEN'S BASKETBALL PRESEASON POLL (# of First Place Votes)
1. Barton - (8) 117
2. Limestone - (4) 111
3. Mount Olive - 99
4. Pfeiffer - 86
T5. Belmont Abbey - 79
T5. Queens - 79
7. Erskine - 49
T8. King - 46
T8. North Greenville - 46
10. Coker - 30
11. Lees-McRae - 29
12. Converse - 21