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CCC Women's Basketball Preseason Poll Released

CCC Women's Basketball Preseason Poll Released

CCC Women's Basketball Preseason Poll Video

SPRINGFIELD, Mass. – Four-time defending Commonwealth Coast Conference Women's Basketball Champion the University of New England has been selected to finish first in the CCC Women's Basketball Preseason Coaches' Poll which was released Thursday afternoon by the conference office.

The Nor'Easters picked up six of 10 first-place votes and 91 total points in the poll which was voted on by the conference's 10 head coaches.

Roger Williams was picked to finish second after garnering 84 points, including one first-place vote. Western New England, last season's tournament runner-up, picked up the other three first-place votes and 82 points. Endicott and Salve Regina were picked fourth and fifth with 81 and 56 points respectively.

Eastern Nazarene (50 points), Curry (43), Nichols (22), Wentworth (21), and Gordon (20) closed out this year's poll in that order.

After narrowly missing out on a trip to the Commonwealth Coast Conference playoffs a season ago and graduating its top three scorers, the Leopards will rely on a mixture of veterans and a talented recruiting class in hopes of returning to the postseason. Leading the group of returners is junior Haley Sabino (Topsfield, Mass.), who is coming off a sophomore season which saw her average 6.6 points and 5.1 rebounds per game. Kellie Messer (Hollis, N.H.), the lone senior on the Leopards this season, averaged 3.8 points and 3.7 rebounds per game as a junior. Junior Courtney McCormick (Hanson, Mass.) returns for the Black & Gold after averaging 2.6 points and 2.4 rebounds per game as a sophomore.

The CCC women's basketball season gets going on Nov. 15 with all 10 teams opening their non-conference schedules. The quest for the CCC title begins on Nov. 30 with the start of conference play. The top eight teams in the conference standings at the end of the season will earn entry into the CCC Women's Basketball Tournament, which starts with the quarterfinals on Tuesday, Feb. 21. The tournament will conclude on Saturday, Feb. 25 with the CCC Championship game. The CCC Tournament Champion will earn the conference's automatic qualifier into the NCAA Women's Basketball Championship Tournament.

Wentworth will open the 2016-2017 campaign at Lasell on Tuesday, Nov. 15.