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Yellow Jackets Picked Fifth at ACC Media Day

Oct. 26, 2010

GREENSBORO, N.C. – Georgia Tech, in a poll released here Tuesday at the Atlantic Coast Conference Women’s Basketball Media Day, was picked to finish fifth in the 2010-11 ACC race.

Last season, the Yellow Jackets were picked to finish seventh, but head coach MaChelle Joseph’s squad ultimately finished in fourth place with an 8-6 league record. Tech finished the 2009-10 campaign 23-10 overall — its fourth consecutive 20-win season — and made its fourth straight NCAA Tournament appearance.

“I know this team will use the fact we’ve been picked to finish fifth in the ACC as motivation to work even harder to prove we are a team that can and will compete at a very high level, night in and night out, in the ACC,” head coach MaChelle Joseph said. “I have no doubt by the end of the season Alex Montgomery will prove she is one of the top players in the league. This is a good starting place. Now we have to focus on what we can control and that’s where we finish.”

Duke was selected as the favorite to win the conference for the first time since 2005. The Blue Devils received 24 of a possible 33 first-place votes from the Blue Ribbon Panel, consisting of national and local media, as well as school representatives.

Following Duke in the poll was North Carolina with six first-place votes and Florida State with two. The Maryland Terrapins were slotted fourth, followed by Tech rounding out the top five. NC State was picked sixth, receiving one first-place vote, followed by Boston College, Miami, Wake Forest, Virginia, Virginia Tech and Clemson.

Leading the All-ACC team was Duke senior guard Jasmine Thomas, who was selected as the Preseason Player of the Year. She is joined on the squad by fellow guards Shenise Johnson, a junior from Miami, and Courtney Ward, a Florida State senior. The preseason frontcourt consists of North Carolina senior forward Jessica Breland and Boston College senior center Carolyn Swords.

The ACC Newcomer Watch list, which replaces the Preseason Rookie of the Year honor, highlights freshmen, true and redshirt, and transfers that are expected to make an immediate impact in the league. This year’s Watch List includes Boston College freshman guard Kristen Doherty, Duke freshman guard Chelsea Gray, Florida State freshman forward Natasha Howard, Duke freshman forward Richa Jackson, Maryland freshman guard Laurin Mincy, and Maryland freshman forward Alyssa Thomas.

2010-11 Predicted Order of Finish
(First Place Votes) 1. Duke (24)
2. North Carolina (6)
3. Florida State (2)
4. Maryland
5. Georgia Tech
6. NC State (1)
7. Boston College
8. Miami
9. Wake Forest
10. Virginia
11. Virginia Tech
12. Clemson

Preseason Player of the Year
Jasmine Thomas, Sr., G, Duke

2010-11 Preseason All-ACC Team
Jessica Breland, Sr., F, North Carolina
Shenise Johnson, Jr., G, Miami
Carolyn Swords, Sr., C, Boston College
Jasmine Thomas, Sr., G, Duke
Courtney Ward, Sr., G, Florida State

2010-11 Newcomer Watch List
Kristen Doherty, G/F, Fr., Boston College
Chelsea Gray, G, Fr., Duke
Natasha Howard, F, Fr., Florida State
Richa Jackson, F, Fr., Duke
Laurin Mincy, G, Fr., Maryland
Alyssa Thomas, F, Fr., Maryland

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