WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 17, 2012
Women’s Basketball No. 4 in SSC Preseason Poll
WINTER PARK, Fla. (Women’s Basketball) – With just over three weeks to go until the 2012-13 basketball season gets underway, the Sunshine State Conference released its preseason women’s basketball poll on Wednesday. The conference coaches and sports information directors picked Florida Tech to finish fourth in the upcoming season.
“I saw the preseason poll today and obviously it is a very tough conference,” head coach John Reynolds said. “We are looking forward to the upcoming season.”
The Panthers, who finished in a three-way tie for fourth place a season ago, received 117 points to sit in the fourth spot. Reigning SSC Tournament Champion Rollins ran away with the top spot, getting 188 points and 13 of the 18 first-place votes. The 2011-12 SSC runner-up Florida Southern was picked to finish fifth in 2012-13 with 88 total points. Barry, who finished in a three-way tie with Rollins and Florida Southern for the regular season title last year, was selected eighth with 74 points.
Nova Southeastern took the remaining five first-place votes to be positioned second, behind Rollins, with 165 points. Tampa rounded out the top three with 131 points, 14 more points than fourth-place Florida Tech.
FIT is coming off its fourth consecutive, and eighth overall, appearance in the NCAA Tournament. The Panthers finished the season with an 18-11 overall record, and held an 8-8 record in conference play. But they will have to replace four of their five starters, including last season’s SSC leading rebounder Briauna Hagins.
Junior Jasmire Brown returns as the lone starter from 2011-12. Brown played in all 29 games, making 24 starts and finished third on the team with 239 total points—8.2 points per game. The Panthers do have experience despite losing four starters. Three other returning players appeared in all 29 games last season, including sophomore Kayk Wilson and juniors Ida Gustafsson and Rita Acevedo. Senior Jami Chappell appeared in 28 games, making six starts.
Coach Reynolds strengthened the depth of his team by bringing in three freshmen and four transfers. Among the group of newcomers is Rosie Hynes. The Division I transfer from Troy University recently finished her fourth stint with the Great Britain National Team this summer. Peggy Smith also joins FIT after a redshirt season at Troy.
The Panthers will open their season with two home exhibition games against the Chilean National Team on Nov. 1, and then Webber International on Nov. 6. FIT will officially open the 2012-13 season with its Gatto’s Tire and Service Tip-Off Classic on Nov. 9. The Panthers will take on the University of Puerto Rico-Rio Piedras at 5:30 p.m.
2012-13 SSC Women’s Basketball Preseason Poll
1 - Rollins, 188 (13)
2 - Nova Southeastern, 165 (5)
3 - Tampa, 131
4 - Florida Tech, 117
5 - Florida Southern, 88
6 - Eckerd, 83
7 - Lynn, 78
8 - Barry, 74
9 - Saint Leo, 48