KANSAS CITY, Mo. – Westmont (Calif.) closes a season of firsts with its first-ever No. 1 ranking in the 2012-13 NAIA Division I Women’s Basketball Coaches’ Postseason Top 25 Poll, the national office announced Wednesday. The Warriors, who were the unanimous No. 1 with 11 first-place votes and 281 points, won their first national title at the 2013 NAIA Division I Women’s Basketball National Championship with a 71-65 victory over Lee (Tenn.).
In addition to winning the national title, Westmont head coach Kirsten Moore was given the Phyllis Holmes NAIA Coach of the Year award, while senior forward Tugce Canitez received Tournament Most Valuable Player and NAIA National Player of the Year honors – firsts for both individuals.
National runner-up Lee checks in at No. 2 with 271 points. The Lady Flames reached the title game for the first time in program history and tied for most wins in the NAIA with 34. Lee also claims the largest improvement within the poll, leaping five spots from No. 7.
No. 3 Freed-Hardeman (Tenn.), who previously spent five-straight weeks at No. 1, checks in with 262 points, while Cumberland (Tenn.) jumps two spots to No. 4 with 255 points and Oklahoma City rounds out the top five with 245 points, respectively.
Overall, 18 programs shifted positions within the poll, including six teams that tallied positive jumps of three-or-more. No. 17 Xavier (La.) suffered the largest fall, tumbling five spots after losing to No. 18 Faulkner (Ala.) in the first round.
No. 25 Southern Poly is the only newcomer this week. The Hornets replace previous No. 25 LSU Shreveport (La.).
Ten of the 11 Division I women’s basketball conferences and unaffiliated groups are represented throughout the Top 25, led by four squads from the Mid-South Conference: Cumberland, No. 10 Campbellsville (Ky.), No. 13 Georgetown (Ky.) and No. 15 Shawnee State (Ohio).
The poll was voted upon by a panel of head coaches representing each of the conferences and unaffiliated group. For the complete ratings calendar, click here.
For more information on NAIA Division I Women’s Basketball, click here.
Notes: (all information dates back to 1999-2000) The No. 1 ranking is the first-ever for Westmont (Calif.) … Five teams have been ranked No. 1 this season: Westmont, Freed-Hardeman (Tenn.), Oklahoma City, Vanguard (Calif.) and Lubbock Christian (Texas) … Former NAIA member Union (Tenn.) leads all schools with 53 top billings, while Oklahoma City (46), Vanguard (Calif.) (28) and former NAIA member Southern Nazarene (Okla.) (15) are the only programs with 10-plus No. 1 rankings … Since the start of the 1999-2000 season, only Oklahoma City and Freed-Hardeman have been listed in all 165 polls … No. 8 Vanguard has appeared in 132-straight … Freed-Hardeman, Lubbock Christian, No. 7 Westminster (Utah), Vanguard and No. 2 Lee (Tenn.) have been ranked in the top 10 in all 13 polls this season … The Unaffiliated Group containing the Association of Independent Institutions and the Chicagoland Collegiate Athletic Conference is the only conference/group to not have a team ranked at any time this season … Thirty-five programs have garnered Top 25 mention this season … Union and Vanguard are the only programs to have spent an entire season ranked No. 1 (Union: 2007-08, 2008-09, 2009-10, 2010-11) (Vanguard: 2005-06, 2006-07).2012-13 NAIA Division I Women’s Basketball Coaches’ Top 25 Poll – Postseason (March 27)
|RANK||LAST TIME||SCHOOL (1ST PLACE VOTES)||2012-13 RECORD||TOTAL POINTS|
|1||4||Westmont (Calif.) (11)||30-4||281|
|6||3||Lubbock Christian (Texas)||31-4||233|
|9||9||MidAmerica Nazarene (Kan.)||30-3||207|
|12||10||The Master’s (Calif.)||25-6||172|
|14||15||Rogers State (Okla.)||24-10||168|
|15||18||Shawnee State (Ohio)||24-10||149|
|22||22||William Woods (Mo.)||26-6||99|
|23||20||Our Lady of the Lake (Texas)||30-4||82|
|25||RV||Southern Poly (Ga.)||25-6||65|
Others receiving votes: LSU Shreveport (La.) 64; St. Catharine (Ky.) 37; Coastal Georgia 36; Cumberlands (Ky.) 35; Southern-New Orleans (La.) 17; Central Methodist (Mo.) 11; Auburn Montgomery (Ala.) 3.