October 27, 2010

Lady Hurricanes picked ninth in preseason poll

AMERICUS - The Peach Belt Conference women's basketball preseason coaches poll was released Tuesday afternoon with Georgia Southwestern picked to come in ninth overall, ahead of Montevallo, Armstrong Atlantic, Augusta State and Flagler. The Lady Hurricanes received two votes for sixth place.

Head coach Kelly Britsky welcomes back three starters from last year’s squad that posted a 12-16 record, a four-win improvement from 2009-10. Despite losing the top two scoring and rebounding threats from last season, Brittany Reynolds (12 ppg, 7.4 rpg) and Whitley Wiltz (11.4 ppg, 8.5 rpg), the Lady Hurricanes retain veteran leadership in seniors Jessica Bivins (10.1 ppg), Nadirah Gardner (7.1 ppg, 4.2 rpg) and Kanita Holloway (6.9 ppg, 5.5 rpg). GSW also returns juniors Terra Branch (16 starts last season) and Tonette Murphy (tied for second on the team with 35 steals).

Even with a strong returning core, Southwestern will look to the seven new players on the roster to contribute immediately. Britsky’s recruiting class includes a pair of NCAA Division I transfers: Tania Walters (Marshall) and Cierra Duhart (Jacksonville State); three junior college transfers: Shakira White (Walters State), Samantha Smith (Tallahassee Community College) and Jarra Arnold (Alabama Southern Community College); and two high school products: LaConna Campbell (Tattnall Square Academy) and Keyanna Mitchell (Fitzgerald).

With a PBC-tested lineup, the Lady Hurricanes look to continue their rise in the standings (no conference wins in 2007-08, three in 2008-09, seven last year) and intend to be on the winning end of more close games this year after suffering five defeats by three points or less last season.

The Lady Hurricanes open the regular season at Albany State on November 16.

The coaches preseason poll is listed below.

2010-11 Women’s Basketball Preseason Poll

Rank Team 1st 2nd 3rd 4th 5th 6th 7th 8th 9th 10th 11th 12th Total
1. Lander 12 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 144
2. Clayton State 1 11 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 133
3. Francis Marion 0 1 5 4 0 0 1 1 0 0 0 0 108
4. Georgia College 0 0 3 4 2 1 2 0 0 0 0 0 101
5. USC Aiken 0 0 2 3 3 3 1 0 0 0 0 0 98
6. Columbus State 0 1 2 0 5 3 0 1 0 0 0 0 97
7. UNC Pembroke 0 0 1 0 2 4 1 3 1 0 0 0 79
8. North Georgia 0 0 0 2 0 0 3 2 2 2 1 0 62
9. Georgia Southwestern 0 0 0 0 0 2 1 3 3 2 0 1 54
10. Montevallo 0 0 0 0 1 0 3 0 3 2 1 2 48
11. Armstrong Atlantic State 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 3 3 3 2 0 46
t12. Augusta State 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 3 4 5 22
t12. Flagler 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 1 5 5 22

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