INDIANAPOLIS – The University of Indianapolis and Drury University women's basketball teams have been selected to win the East and West Divisions, respectively, for the upcoming 2012-13 Great Lakes Valley Conference season, it was announced by the conference office Thursday.
The annual GLVC Women's Basketball Preseason Poll was voted on by the league coaches and ranks the top-eight teams in each of the conference's two divisions.
UIndy was the unanimous choice in the East with 115 points, followed by UW-Parkside finishing second with 91 points. Kentucky Wesleyan came in third with 86 points. Bellarmine followed in fourth place with 81 points, while Lewis and Southern Indiana tied for fifth with 60 points. Saint Joseph's received 50 points to finish seventh, trailed by newcomer McKendree with 25 points to round out the poll.
The Greyhounds are coming off a 19-win season and its fourth NCAA Tournament in the last five years. Second-year head coach Constantin Popa returns four starters and 10 letterwinners from the 2011-12 squad, including GLVC leading-scorer Kristin Turner. To start the season, the Women's Division II Bulletin ranked UIndy No. 4 in the nation in its preseason poll. It also tabbed its “Super 16” selections, with senior Turner earning a spot on the coveted list. The Greyhounds nabbed a top-10 preseason spot from the Bulletin for the second time in the last three years.
Drury earned 115 points and 10 first-place votes, and was picked to win the West Division. The Panthers finished last season 20-8 overall, and 15-3 in conference play returned to the NCAA-II Tournament for a 10th straight year after falling to UIndy 60-54 in the quarterfinals in the SCHEELS GLVC Championship. The Lady Panthers return three starters, including Katie Pritchard, Bethanie Funderburk, and Abby Bracker.
Defending GLVC Champion Maryville has been picked to finish second in the East earning 108 points, seven shy of Drury. The Saints, in just their first year of GLVC postseason play eligibility, won the GLVC Championship with a 75-62 win over Kentucky Wesleyan. Maryville, which finished last year's campaign 19-12, and 11-7 in the GLVC, recently earned the No. 19 spot in the Division II Bulletin Preseason Top 25 poll. The Saints return 11 players including first-team All-Conference selection Abby Duethman, reigning GLVC Freshman of the Year and Tournament MVP Shelby Miller, and Kate Childs.
Quincy collected one first-place vote and was picked to finish third with 88 points, while Missouri S&T (79) edged out William Jewell (58) for fifth place. Missouri-St. Louis (47) placed sixth, followed by Illinois Springfield in seventh place (41), and Rockhurst in eighth (32).
The 2012-13 GLVC women's basketball season opens Friday, Nov. 9, with Bellarmine, Illinois
Springfield, Quincy, and Southern Indiana in action.
GLVC WEST PRESEASON POLL
1. Drury (10) 115
2. Maryville (5) 108
3. Quincy (1) 88
4. MO S & T 79
5. William Jewell 58
6. UMSL 47
7. Illinois-Springfield 41
8. Rockhurst 32
GLVC EAST PRESEASON POLL
1. Indianapolis (10) 115
2. UW-Parkside (4) 91
3. Kentucky Wesleyan (1) 86
4. Bellarmine (1) 81
T5. Lewis 60
T5. Southern Indiana 60
7. Saint Joseph's 50
8. McKendree 25
It was a tough weekend for our local teams in Blue Springs.
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