49ers picked to finish fifth in 2012-13 Big West Women's Basketball Preseason Poll
Oct. 24, 2012
LONG BEACH - The Long Beach State women's basketball team was picked to finish fifth in the 2012-13 Big West preseason poll as voted on by a panel of media members the conference office announced Wednesday afternoon. The 49ers received one first-place vote and totaled 116 points.
Cal State Northridge was tabbed as this year's favorite, compiling 161 points (six first-place votes), while Pacific was a close second with five first-place nods and 159 points. Reigning Big West Tournament champion UC Santa Barbara was selected to finish third (153 points), and two-time defending Big West regular season champion Cal Poly was fourth (127 points).
Newcomer Hawaii came in sixth behind Long Beach State with 81 points, and was followed by UC Davis (80), UC Riverside (74), UC Irvine (65) and Cal State Fullerton (29).
The media also voted on a six-player preseason all-conference team that included Kayla Griffin (Cal Poly), Ashlee Guay (Cal State Northridge), Kamilah Martin (Hawaii), Tre'Shonti Nottingham (UC Riverside), Kendall Rodriguez (Pacific) and Janae Sharpe (Cal State Northridge).
The 49ers welcome back eight letterwinners from a 2011-12 squad that went 14-18 and advanced to the Big West Tournament championship game. Sophomore Alex Sanchez leads the group as the team's top returning scorer after averaging 9.2 points per game last year. Sanchez garnered All-Big West honorable mention recognition and was named to the conference's all-freshman team.
Sophomore Devin Hudson, who was a 2012 Big West All-Tournament Team pick, is also coming off a strong finish to last season as she registered 6.0 points and 5.9 rebounds per contest. She notched her third double-double of the season in the Big West championship game with a career-high 15 points and 14 rebounds.
Also returning for LBSU is senior Mary Ochiltree, junior Hallie Meneses, and sophomores Bianka Balthazar, Chantel Dooley, Sigrid Skorpen and Lauren Spargo. Both sophomores Ella Clark and Sendy Valles are coming off a redshirt year.
Entering the mix in 2012-13 is junior Jade Wilson and freshmen Yana Dellavedova and Gabby Kaiser.
Long Beach State officially opens the season on Friday, Nov. 9, when it hosts Sacramento State at 7 p.m. Fans can get an early look at the team this Saturday (Oct. 27) as the 49ers will be hosting an open practice from 8-10 a.m. at the Walter Pyramid.
Media Poll Results 1. Cal State Northridge (6) 161 2. Pacific (5) 159 3. UC Santa Barbara (3) 153 4. Cal Poly (1) 127 5. Long Beach State (1) 116 6. Hawaii 81 7. UC Davis 80 8. UC Riverside 74 9. UC Irvine 65 10. Cal State Fullerton 29