The Stanly News and Press (Albemarle, NC)

October 23, 2012

Falcon women picked sixth, men eighth


Tuesday, October 23, 2012 — The polls released by the coaches of Conference Carolinas has the Pfeiffer women’s and men’s basketball teams picked sixth and eighth respectively in the preseason polls released recently.

Women’s Poll

The Limestone College women’s basketball team has been voted as the preseason favorites in Conference Carolinas for the first time in team history. The Saints are coming off their best season in the 30-year history of the program, finishing with a 25-7 overall record and a 16-2 mark in league play while claiming the Conference Carolinas regular season and tournament titles.

Limestone returns a backcourt from last season’s team that reached the NCAA tournament, including a trio of seniors. Senior guard Maria Young, named First Team All-Conference and the CC tournament’s Most Valuable Player a season ago, is poised to become the team’s all-time leading scorer, while senior guard Tia Williams is a two-time All-Conference selection.

Barton College is coming off a 21-9 season where it seized the East Division Conference Carolinas title at 14-3. The Lady Bulldogs return one full-time starter in junior point guard Nyeshea Willie, who was league Freshman of the Year and followed that up with All-Conference accolades last season.

Mount Olive College returns all five starters, including three players with eight or more rebounds per game, from last year’s squad, which came within one win of its fourth 20-win season in the last five years. The Trojans were 19-9 last year and finished second in the Conference Carolinas East Division with a 12-5 mark.

Coker finished fourth in the poll with North Green-ville fifth followed by Pfeiffer, Queens, Belmont Abbey, Erskine, King, Lees-McRae and Converse respectively, rounding out the poll standings.

 Women's Basketball

Pre-Season Poll

(# of First Place Votes in Parenthesis)                 

1. Limestone - (11) 121

2. Barton - (1) 108

3. Mount Olive - 96             

4. Coker - 89           

5. North Greenville - 82     

6. Pfeiffer - 67       

7. Queens - 66       

8. Belmont Abbey - 49       

9. Erskine - 45        

10. King - 35              

11. Lees-McRae - 22              

12. Converse – 12

Men’s Poll

Barton was selected as the top team in the men's basketball preseason poll.

The Bulldogs are coming off a 20-10 season where they finished 9-7 in league play before rolling to the CC tournament title.

Barton, which has made six NCAA tournament appearances in head coach Ron Lievense’s 17 years, returns just one full-time starter from that team. That player is former league Freshman of the Year Gerald Boston, a sensational senior point guard who is three-time All-Conference and is coming off a junior year where he garnered CC tournament MVP and All-Region honors.

King College ranked second in the preseason poll. Last season the Tornado surprised Conference Caro-linas after being picked fifth in the preseason poll by having one of the best seasons in school history by posting an overall record of 23-8, winning the regular season conference title with a record of 14-2 and advancing to the program’s first NCAA Tournament during its first year of postseason eligibility.

Mount Olive finished third in the poll. The Trojans return two full-time starters and four key reserves from last year’s squad, which posted its seventh 20-win season in nine years.

Queens finished fourth in the poll with Belmont Abbey fifth followed by Coker, Limestone, Pfeiffer, Erskine, Lees-McRae and North Greenville.

Men's Basketball Preseason Poll

(# of First Place Votes in Parenthesis)

1. Barton - 88 (4)

2. King - 84 (3)

3. Mount Olive - 81 (2)

4. Queens - 79

5. Belmont Abbey - 66

6. Coker - 52

7. Limestone - 52

8. Pfeiffer - 37

9. Erskine - 29

10. Lees-McRae - 20

11. North Greenville – 17