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Top 25 Poll No. 7

January 30, 2012
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By Jake Knabel, NAIA Communications & Sports Information Intern

KANSAS CITY, Mo. – After being voted a unanimous No. 1 selection for six-straight weeks, Indiana Wesleyan shares the top spot with Davenport (Mich.) in the seventh regular-season edition of the NAIA Division II Women’s Basketball Coaches’ Top 25 Poll, the national office announced Monday. The Wildcats were held to 32.6 percent shooting and fell to unranked Grace (Ind.), 41-39, on Jan. 25, allowing the red-hot Lady Panthers to catch up in the poll.

Davenport received six first-place votes – one more than Indiana Wesleyan – and totaled 363 points. The Lady Panthers have now won 17-straight games, including two blowout Wolverine-Hoosier Athletic Conference victories over Indiana Tech and Siena Heights (Mich.) last week. Indiana Wesleyan collected five first-place nods and equaled Davenport’s 363 points.

Concordia (Neb.) moved up two spots to No. 3, earning the other three first-place votes and 351 points. College of the Ozarks (Mo.) remained at No. 4 with 348 points and Morningside (Iowa) returned to the top five for the first time since the Jan. 9 poll. The Mustangs tallied 317 points.

Eight ranked teams tied for the biggest move up in the poll this week with all eight climbing two spots, including co-No. 1 Davenport. In each of the previous seven polls, one team moved up at least three positions. On the other hand, Briar Cliff (Iowa) plummeted more than any other Top 25 squad, spiraling back eight spots to No. 10 this week. The Chargers dropped a narrow 89-88 decision to then-No. 9 Northwestern (Iowa) in the NAIA Game of the Week on Jan. 25 before a lopsided 81-57 defeat to unranked Dordt (Iowa) on Jan. 28.

There is only one newcomer to the poll as Point Park (Pa.) checks in at No. 25, replacing fellow American Mideast Conference (AMC) member and previously-ranked No. 19 Daemen (N.Y.). Point Park has won 11 straight and wrestled control of first place in the AMC away from Daemen by defeating the Wildcats by a score of 51-43 on Jan. 28 in Pittsburgh, Pa.

Twelve of the 14 Division II women's basketball conferences and independents are represented throughout the Top 25. The Great Plains Athletic Conference again placed the most teams of any league in the poll with five: Concordia, Morningside, No. 7 Northwestern, Briar Cliff and No. 20 Hastings (Neb.). The Mid-Central College Conference was second with three ranked teams: Indiana Wesleyan, No. 12 Bethel (Ind.) and No. 21 Huntington (Ind.).

The poll was voted upon by a panel of head coaches representing each of the conferences and independents. The next poll will be announced on Feb. 6.

Notes: (All information as of the 1999 – 2000 season) Indiana Wesleyan has now appeared at the top of the poll on 21 occasions, two better than Morningside (Iowa) for the most No. 1 rankings all-time … Davenport (Mich.) has pushed its total No. 1 rankings to 13 to move into a tie with Hastings (Neb.) for third most, followed by Saint Francis (Ind.) who has made a dozen No. 1 appearances … There have been 14 different teams to garner the No. 1 ranking all-time … Northwestern made 33-consecutive appearances in the top 10 until falling out of the rankings in this season’s first regular-season poll … The Red Raiders have now been placed in the top 10 of 90 polls all-time … Three schools have spent an entire season at No. 1: Morningside in 2008-09, College of the Ozarks (Mo.) in 2007-08 and Saint Francis in 1999-2000 … In the last 12 years, five teams that have been rated No. 1 in the preseason have gone on to win the national championship with the last being Northwestern in 2011 … Point Park (Pa.) is making its first appearance all-time in the rankings.

RANK LAST WEEK SCHOOL (1ST PLACE VOTES) RECORD TOTAL POINTS
1 1 Indiana Wesleyan (5) 22-2 363
1 3 Davenport (Mich.) (6) 22-2 363
3 5 Concordia (Neb.) (3) 22-2 351
4 4 College of the Ozarks (Mo.) 19-3 348
5 7 Morningside (Iowa) 18-6 317
6 6 Concordia (Mich.) 20-4 307
7 9 Northwestern (Iowa) 17-5 293
8 8 Eastern Oregon 19-4 286
9 10 Grand View (Iowa) 19-5 270
10 2 Briar Cliff (Iowa) 19-5 268
11 12 Jamestown (N.D.) 21-3 266
12 11 Bethel (Ind.) 18-5 260
13 14 Corban (Ore.) 16-5 217
14 16 Southwestern (Kan.) 17-5 206
15 15 Mount Mercy (Iowa) 17-7 193
16 13 St. Thomas (Fla.) 16-5 192
17 17 Cardinal Stritch (Wis.) 19-5 191
18 20 Tennessee Wesleyan 16-6 164
19 21 Saint Mary (Neb.) 17-6 148
20 18 Hastings (Neb.) 15-8 135
21 22 Huntington (Ind.) 15-7 120
22 23 Friends (Kan.) 16-8 108
23 25 Ave Maria (Fla.) 19-4 99
24 24 Union (Ky.) 16-6 86
25 RV Point Park (Pa.) 16-4 83

Others Receiving Votes: Saint Francis (Ind.) 69; Siena Heights (Mich.) 46; Daemen (N.Y.) 45; College of Idaho 44; Marian (Ind.) 24; Cornerstone (Mich.) 16; Asbury (Ky.) 14; Warner Pacific (Ore.) 12; Grace (Ind.) 9; Oregon Tech 8; Mount Marty (S.D.) 4; Indiana Southeast 4; Virginia Intermont 4; Sterling (Kan.) 3; Iowa Wesleyan 1; Kansas Wesleyan 1; Taylor (Ind.) 1; Montreat (N.C.) 1; Purdue Calumet (Ind.) 1; Cal Maritime 1; Bluefield (Va.) 1; Northwestern Ohio 1.