Women picked fourth, Hamson named to WCC preseason team

(Photo by BYU Photo/Mark Philbrick)

EL SEGUNDO, Calif. — BYU women’s basketball has been selected to finish fourth in a preseason poll of the West Coast Conference’s 10 head coaches. The poll and the preseason  all-conference team were announced Thursday at Time Warner Cable Sports studios as part of the Third Annual West Coast Conference Basketball Tip-Off event, streamed live on TheW.tv. 

Gonzaga has been selected as the favorite to win the West Coast Conference regular season title. The Bulldogs received nine first place votes and 81 of 90 possible points in the poll. 

San Diego received one first place vote and was picked to finish second in the WCC preseason poll with 69 points. The Toreros advanced to the second round of the 2013 WNIT en route to the third 20-win season in program history. 

Saint Mary’s College checked in at third place in the preseason poll, receiving 63 points, just one point in front of Brigham Young University. The Gaels edged the Cougars 59-55 in the third round of the 2013 WNIT in Provo.

Senior center Jennifer Hamson (11.2 ppg, 8.8 rpg, 2.8 bpg) leads BYU into 2013-14 and makes the Preseason All-Conference list in her final collegiate basketball season. A First Team All-WCC selection as a junior in both volleyball and basketball, Hamson led the league and ranked 12th nationally in blocked shots per game (2.8) for the Cougars, who advanced to their ninth postseason in the last 12 years.

Pacific was picked to finish fifth in the preseason coaches poll in its first season of competition in the WCC. The Tigers collected 46 votes and posted a 27-8 record with a 14-4 slate in the Big West preceding a march to the third round of the 2013 WNIT.

Loyola Marymount was picked sixth with 38 votes.

Portland, San Francisco and Santa Clara are in a three-way logjam in seventh place on the preseason prognostications with 27 points apiece. Pepperdine rounds out the poll with 10 points.

BYU, who returns two starters from last season’s team, tips off the 2013-14 season on Friday, November 8, hosting NCAA participant South Dakota State. The team has slated two exhibition games prior to the home opener. They play Colorado Mesa State on Friday, November 1 and in-state foe Westminster on Saturday, Nov. 2. Both of the exhibition games are free to the public. 

The complete preseason poll and all-conference team follows. 

2013-14 WEST COAST CONFERENCE PRESEASON POLL
Team (First Place Votes) Points
1.  Gonzaga (9) 81
2.  San Diego (1) 69
3.  Saint Mary’s  63
4.  BYU 62
5.  Pacific 46
6.  Loyola Marymount 38
7t.  Portland 27
7t.  San Francisco 27
7t.  Santa Clara 27
10. Pepperdine 10
 

2013-14 PRESEASON ALL-WEST COAST CONFERENCE TEAM

Player School Yr. Pos.
Zhané Dikes San Francisco So. G
Sunny Greinacher Pepperdine Jr. F
Jennifer Hamson BYU Sr. C
Maya Hood San Diego So. F
Amy Kame San Diego Sr. G
Danielle Mauldin Saint Mary's Sr. F
Jackie Nared Saint Mary’s Sr. G
Haiden Palmer Gonzaga Sr. G
Hazel Ramirez Loyola Marymount Sr G
Jazmine Redmon Gonzaga Sr G