SPRINGFIELD – The Drury Panthers are picked to win the West Division of the Great Lakes Valley Conference in the league’s preseason coaches’ poll.
Drury received 60 points in the poll and seven first-place votes to finish ahead of Truman State. The Bulldogs garnered 56 points and five first-place votes. Rockhurst was picked for third in the division with two first-place votes, Missouri S&T was selected for fourth and William Jewell received a first-place vote but a point total that has the Cardinals picked for fifth place in the division.
The 15-team GLVC will be split into three divisions this season. Bellarmine was picked to win the East Division and Maryville was selected to win the Central.
12 of the league’s 15 teams received a first-place vote to win their respective division including every team in the Central Division.
The three division winners and five at-large teams with the best conference records will advance to the GLVC Championship Tournament in Edwardsville, Illinois on March 1-4.
Drury returns three starters from a team that went 18-10 last season. Head coach Steve Hesser will enter his 14th year leading the Panthers and has guided the team to eight regular season conference titles, two GLVC championships, eight NCAA-II national tournament appearances and the 2013 NCAA-II national championship.
The Panthers opener is on Monday, Nov. 6 with an exhibition game against Blackburn (Ill.) at 7 p.m. in the O’Reilly Family Event Center.
Complete GLVC Men’s Basketball Preseason Coaches’ Poll Results
Team, Points, (1st)
1. DRURY, 60 (7)
2. Truman St., 56 (5)
3. Rockhurst, 47 (2)
4. Missouri S&T, 29
5. William Jewell, 28 (1)
1. Maryville, 56 (6)
2. Missouri-St. Louis, 53 (3)
3. Illinois Springfield, 43 (3)
4. Quincy, 42 (2)
5. McKendree, 26 (1)
1. Bellarmine, 54 (13)
2. Indianapolis, 51 (1)
3. Lewis, 49
4. Southern Indiana, 48
5. UW-Parkside, 21 (1)