Women's Basketball Picked Third by League Coaches
The College of Charleston women's basketball team was picked to finish third in the Southern Conference Preseason poll as voted on by the league head coaches. Guards Jade Hughes (Spartanburg, S.C.) and Tonia Gerty (Port Orange, Fla.) were named to the Preseason All-Conference Team.
College of Charleston (84) was picked to finish third and returns three starters to a team that 14-6 overall and 23-8 in league play. The Cougars made their first trip to the conference tournament title game last season before falling to Western Carolina in triple overtime.
Chattanooga received 98 points overall, seven points ahead of second-place Samford. The Lady Mocs have won at least a share of the last 10 SoCon regular season titles and return three starters from a team that went 22-10 overall and 17-3 in league play during the 2008-09 season.
Receiving the other two first-place votes and 91 points overall was Samford, which was picked to finish second in the league. The Bulldogs return four starters from a team that went 22-7 overall and finished second in the conference with a 16-4 SoCon record last season, their first season in the conference.
Picked to finish fourth in the league was Davidson (64), which returns three starters.
Defending tournament champion Western Carolina (58) was picked to finish fifth. The Catamounts are led by new head coach Karen Middleton and return two starters from last season.
Georgia Southern (56) was picked to finish at sixth, while UNC Greensboro (54) came in at seventh. Appalachian State and Furman (31) tied for eighth, followed by Elon (26) at 10th and Wofford (12) at 11th.
The coaches also selected the preseason all-conference team. Hollinquest was joined by teammate Jenaya Wade-Fray, a senior.
College of Charleston, Davidson and Samford also each had two players on the team. Representing the Cougars were Hughes and Gerty. Hughes is just 19 points shy of becoming the 23rd player in CofC history to reach the 1,000 point plateau, while Gerty led the team last season in scoring, assists and steals.
Juniors Alex Thompson and Ashley Lax were tabbed from the Wildcats, while juniors Emily London and Savannah Hill were picked from the Bulldogs.
Also named to the team were Furman senior Lee Stephens and Western Carolina junior Emily Clarke.
Charleston's men and women host USC Aiken in exhibition games on Saturday, Nov. 7th at Carolina First Arena. The men begin at 5 p.m., and the women start at 7 p.m. Both teams begin regular season play on Nov. 13th. The women's team plays at North Carolina at 7 p.m., while the men are at Coastal Carolina at 7 p.m. For ticket information call 843-953.CofC (2632).
SoCon Women's Basketball Coaches Preseason Poll
Team (1st Place Votes), Total Points
1. Chattanooga (9), 98
2. Samford (2), 91
3. College of Charleston, 84
4. Davidson, 64
5. Western Carolina, 58
6. Georgia Southern, 56
7. UNC Greensboro, 54
T8. Appalachian State, 31
T8. Furman, 31
10. Elon, 26
11. Wofford, 12
SoCon Women's Basketball Preseason All-Conference Team
Emily Clarke, Western Carolina
Tonia Gerty, College of Charleston
Savannah Hill, Samford
Shanara Hollinquest, Chattanooga
Jade Hughes, College of Charleston
Ashley Lax, Davidson
Emily London, Samford
Lee Stephens, Furman
Alex Thompson, Davidson
Jenaya Wade-Fray, Chattanooga
SoCon Women's Basketball Preseason Player of the Year
Shanara Hollinquest, Chattanooga