Three straight Frontier Conference Championships, 17 straight 20-plus win seasons, and a 29-5 record with a trip to the quarterfinals at the NAIA national championship last year helped the Lewis-Clark State College women’s basketball team earn the No. 5 ranking in the 2008-09 NAIA preseason poll announced on Monday.
The LCSC women’s team, ranked No. 10 during the final six weeks of last season before being eliminated at the national tournament by Union University (Tenn.), earned 238 points in the poll.
Union earned the No. 1 ranking with 279 total points and eight of the 11 first-place votes. The 2007-08 National Champion, Vanguard (Calif.) received the other three first-place votes and gathered 274 points for the second spot.
The Frontier Conference was well represented as Carroll came in at No. 8 with 216 points, Westminster was tied for 16th with 117 points, and both Montana State-Northern and Rocky Mountain received a vote.
On the men’s side, Lewis-Clark State College earned 83 points its preseason poll to weigh in at No. 22 in the NAIA. Two-time defending champion Oklahoma City topped the poll as it received six of the possible 11 first-place votes and 273 total points. Westminster led the way for the Frontier Conference as its 172 points were good enough for No. 13. Rocky Mountain and Carroll both received votes, but failed to crack the top 25.
The Warrior men have won back-to-back Frontier Conference championships, and finished last season with a 22-10 record.
The LCSC women’s basketball team kicks off its season this week when it plays host to Warner Pacific at 7 p.m. on Thursday, Oct. 30 in the LCSC Activity Center. The women will then head south to play an exhibition game against Boise State on Saturday, Nov. 1 at noon.