MOBILE, Ala. (10/22/07) With all five starters returning and 10 letterwinners back the North Texas women’s basketball team has been picked to finish third in the West Division of the Sun Belt Conference in the preseason coaches poll. The Mean Green received two first place votes and 62 points in the poll.
Senior Talicia Sanders was named to the Preseason All-Sun Belt Conference third-team for the second consecutive year. Sanders led the Mean Green in blocked shots last season (32) and is one of the most prolific rebounders in the conference. Sanders enters the 2007-08 season with a chance at becoming the all-time leading rebounder in school history.
Four different teams picked up first place votes in the West Division led by UALR. The Trojans were the pick to win the West Division with six-first place votes. Denver was second with three-first place votes followed by North Texas. Arkansas State received two-first place votes and was selected fourth followed by Louisiana-Lafayette fifth, Louisiana-Monroe sixth, and New Orleans seventh.
Western Kentucky is the favorite on the East side as they received nine-first place votes and 74 points. The Lady Toppers are paced by the Preseason Player of the Year Crystal Kelly.
Four-time defending conference champion Middle Tennessee received four-first place votes and was picked to finish second. Florida International was tabbed third followed by South Alabama and Troy, both picked fourth and Florida Atlantic was sixth.
The 2007 Sun Belt Conference Tournament will be hosted by South Alabama March 8-11.
Preseason Coaches Poll
As voted on by all 13 league head coaches
First place votes in parenthesis
East Division Points
1. Western Kentucky (9) 74
2. Middle Tennessee (4) 69
3. Florida International 45
T4. South Alabama 33
T4. Troy 33
6. Florida Atlantic 19
West Division Points
1. UALR (6) 76
2. Denver (3) 70
3. North Texas (2) 61
4. Arkansas State (2) 58
5. Louisiana-Lafayette 48
6. Louisiana-Monroe 34
7. New Orleans 17
2007-08 Women’s Preseason All-Sun Belt Team
Kim Sitzmann (UALR, So., G)
LaQuetta Ferguson (Florida International, Sr., G)
Amber Holt (Middle Tennessee, Sr., F)
Le’Della English (New Orleans, Sr., G)
Crystal Kelly (WKU, Sr. F)
Nikya Hughes (UALR, Sr., F/C)
Alisha Godette (Denver, Sr., G)
Onna Charles (Louisiana-Lafayette, Sr., G)
Amy Lewis (Troy, Sr., G)
Dominique Duck (WKU, Jr. F)
Anshel Cooper (UALR, So., G)
Iva Ciglar (Florida International, Jr., G)
LeJeanna Howard (Louisiana-Monroe, Sr., G)
Talicia Sanders (North Texas, Sr., F)
Monique Jones (South Alabama, Sr., G)
Preseason Player of the Year - Crystal Kelly (WKU, Sr. F)