Oct. 18, 2011
GREENSBORO, N.C. – The Georgia Tech women’s basketball team was picked to finish fifth in the Atlantic Coast Conference in a poll released at the league’s annual preseason media day, held at the Greensboro Coliseum Tuesday.
Last season, the Yellow Jackets were also picked fifth and tied Maryland for fourth with a 9-5 conference record. Tech defeated the Terps in the ACC Tournament quarterfinals before falling to eventual champion Duke in the semifinals. The Yellow Jackets return 12 letterwinners and three starters from last year’s team that won a school-record 24 games, and earned an at-large berth in the program’s fifth consecutive NCAA Tournament.
Freshman Sydney Wallace earned preseason distinction, being selected to the ACC Newcomer Watch List. The watch list, which replaced the Preseason Rookie of the Year in 2010, highlights freshmen, true and redshirt, and transfers that are expected to make an immediate impact.
“We are excited to have Sydney recognized as one of the freshmen to watch in the Atlantic Coast Conference,” head coach MaChelle Joseph said. “We are looking forward to the start of our season and competing in the ACC. In my opinion, there is a lot of parity in our league and we are excited to challenge for the ACC championship.”
After tying Duke for first place in 2010-11, the Miami Hurricanes were tabbed as the preseason favorite in 2011-12 for the first time since joining the conference. The Hurricanes received 30 of 40 possible first-place votes and landed two players on the Preseason All-ACC Team, Shenise Johnson and Riquna Williams, with Johnson being named the Preseason Player of the Year.
The Blue Devils followed Miami in the poll, with 10 first-place votes. Rounding out the top five were Maryland, Florida State and Tech. North Carolina was picked sixth, followed by NC State and Virginia. Boston College was picked ninth, Wake Forest 10th, Clemson was slotted 11th and Virginia Tech 12th.
Along with the Hurricanes’ Johnson and Williams, Maryland placed two on the preseason all-conference team, senior center Lynetta Kizer and sophomore forward Alyssa Thomas. Florida State senior forward Cierra Bravard was also selected to the team.
In addition to Wallace, the Newcomer Watch List featured two Blue Devils, freshman center Elizabeth Williams and freshman forward Amber Henson. North Carolina freshman guard Brittany Rountree and Clemson freshman guard/forward Natiece Ford were also named to the watch list.
The Yellow Jackets will begin their season on Friday, Nov. 11, when they host the Alabama State Hornets at 5:30 p.m. at the Arena at Gwinnett.
2011-12 Predicted Order of Finish
(First Place Votes)
1. Miami (30)
2. Duke (10)
4. Florida State
5. Georgia Tech
6. North Carolina
7. NC State
9. Boston College
10. Wake Forest
12. Virginia Tech
Preseason Player of the Year
Shenise Johnson, Sr., G, Miami
2011-12 Preseason All-ACC Team
Cierra Bravard, Sr., F, Florida State
Shenise Johnson, Sr., G, Miami
Lynetta Kizer, Sr., C, Maryland
Alyssa Thomas, So., F, Maryland
Riquna Williams, Sr., G, Miami
2011-12 Newcomer Watch List
Amber Henson, Fr., F, Duke
Sydney Wallace, Fr., G, Georgia Tech
Brittany Rountree, Fr., G, North Carolina
Natiece Ford, Fr., G/F, Clemson
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