ST. LOUIS - The Drake women's basketball team was picked to finish ninth in the Missouri Valley Conference's annual preseason poll, the conference announced Monday morning.
Creighton, which returns its top five scorers from last year's Missouri Valley Tournament championship squad, has been tabbed as the preseason favorite in the MVC's women's basketball race in the annual survey of the league's coaches, sports information directors and media members. Creighton defeated Drake in the MVC tournament championship game last season.
Drake head coach Jennie Baranczyk will have 10 first or second year student-athletes and just one senior in her first season at the helm of the program. The young Bulldogs (121) finished just behind Southern Illinois (123) for the eighth spot in the voting.
Creighton received 26 of 40 first-place votes and 382 total points, out-distancing Wichita State (347). Illinois State (323), UNI (272) and Missouri State (265) follow the Bluejays in a tightly-packed group behind the preseason favorite.
The Bulldogs begin the 2012-13 season on Friday night with an exhibition game against Quincy (Ill.) University at 7:05 p.m. in the Knapp Center. The regular season will start Sunday, Nov. 11 when South Dakota visits the Knapp Center. Tip-off against the Coyotes will be 2:05 p.m.
Single-game tickets went on sale today for the 2012-13 season. Click here to purchase single-game tickets for the upcoming season as well as season tickets and mini-packs.
School (First-Place Votes) Points
1. Creighton (26) 382
2. Wichita State (12) 347
3. Illinois State (2) 323
4. UNI 272
5. Missouri State 265
6. Bradley 144
7. Indiana State 135
8. Southern Illinois 123
9. Drake 121
10. Evansville 119
2012-13 MVC WOMEN'S BASKETBALL PRESEASON ALL-CONFERENCE TEAM
Player, School, Pos., Yr., Hometown (High School/Previous School)
Jessica Diamond, Wichita State, G, Sr., Houston, Texas (Chester W. Nimitz)
Jacqui Kalin, UNI, G, Sr., Sioux City, Iowa (North)
Jamie Russell, Illinois State, G, Sr., Rock Falls, Ill. (Rock Falls/Wisconsin)
Christiana Shorter, Missouri State, F, Sr., Tulsa, Okla. (Booker T. Washington)
*Carli Tritz, Creighton,G, Jr., Sioux City, Iowa (Bishop Heelan)
*Preseason Player of the Year