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Yellow Jackets Predicted to Finish Fifth in ACC

THE FLATS – Georgia Tech women’s basketball was predicted to finish fifth in the Atlantic Coast Conference by the league’s head coaches as announced by the conference office on Tuesday in conjunction with preseason awards. The Yellow Jackets turned in their best ACC record last season (10-8) since 2011-12.

Tech returned seven letterwinners from 2019-20, including the team’s leading returning rebounder and scorer in seniors Lorela Cubaj and Kierra Fletcher. Additionally, the Jackets welcomed six newcomers in a highly touted recruiting class.

Head coach Nell Fortner and the Jackets put together a successful 2019-20 campaign, finishing with a 20-11 overall record, marking the best record by a first-year head coach in Georgia Tech women’s basketball history. Tech’s 10-win ACC ledger was the first since 2011-12 when it finished tied for third in the league. Fortner was tabbed the 2020 Whack Hyder Georgia Women’s College Coach of the Year following her inaugural year on The Flats.

The Yellow Jackets capped last season reaching the ACC Tournament quarterfinals for the first time since 2016. Additionally, Tech went 4-2 against top-25 programs, including its highest ranked road win in program history at No. 4 NC State.

Louisville was selected as the 2020-21 preseason favorite for the second consecutive season after winning the regular season title in 2019-20. NC State, the 2020 ACC Tournament Champion, was picked to finish second, followed by Syracuse and North Carolina in the coaches poll, ahead of Georgia Tech. The Yellow Jackets last finished in the top-5 in the ACC in 2011-12. Georgia Tech was picked to finish ninth by the Blue Ribbon Panel.

Head Coaches & Blue Ribbon Panel Preseason Player of the Year
Dana Evans, Louisville, Sr., G

Head Coaches Preseason All-ACC Team
Taylor Soule, Boston College, Jr., F
Dana Evans, Louisville, Sr., G (12 Preseason Player of the Year Votes)
Janelle Bailey, North Carolina, Sr., C
Jakia Brown-Turner, NC State So., G
Elissa Cunane, NC State, Jr., C (3)
Kiara Lewis, Syracuse, Sr., G
Tiana Mangakahia, Syracuse, Gr., G
Elizabeth Kitley, Virginia Tech, So., C
Aisha Sheppard, Virginia Tech, Sr., G
Ivana Raca, Wake Forest, Sr., F

Head Coaches Newcomer Watch List
Hailey Van Lith, Louisville, Fr., G
Kianna Smith, Louisville, Jr., G
Deja Kelly, North Carolina, Fr., G
Maddy Westbeld, Notre Dame, Fr., F
Kamilla Cardoso, Syracuse, Fr., C

Head Coaches Predicted Order of Finish
Louisville (13 first-place votes) – 223
NC State (2) – 210
Syracuse – 193
North Carolina – 157
Georgia Tech – 146
Notre Dame – 138
Virginia Tech – 125
Florida State – 124
Boston College – 120
Miami – 99
Duke – 74
Wake Forest – 73
Clemson – 56
Pittsburgh – 37
Virginia – 25

Blue Ribbon Panel Preseason All-ACC Team (57 voters)
Taylor Soule, Boston College, Jr., F (3)
Dana Evans, Louisville, Sr., G (40)
Janelle Bailey, North Carolina, Sr., C
Elissa Cunane, NC State, Jr., C (11)
Sam Brunelle, Notre Dame, So., F
Kiara Lewis, Syracuse, Sr., G
Tiana Mangakahia, Syracuse, Gr., G (3)
Elizabeth Kitley, Virginia Tech, So., C
Aisha Sheppard, Virginia Tech, Sr., G
Ivana Raca, Wake Forest, Sr., F

() Indicates preseason player of the year votes

Blue Ribbon Panel Newcomer Watch List
Tiana England, Florida State, Gr., G
Hailey Van Lith, Louisville, Fr., G
Deja Kelly, North Carolina, Fr., G
Maddy Westbeld, Notre Dame, Fr., F
Kamilla Cardoso, Syracuse, Fr., C

Blue Ribbon Panel Predicted Order of Finish (57 voters)
Louisville (45 first-place votes) – 840 points
NC State (10) – 797 points
Syracuse (2) – 724 points
Notre Dame – 555 points
North Carolina – 547 points
Florida State – 516 points
Virginia Tech – 482 points
Boston College – 468 points
Georgia Tech – 452 points
Duke – 385 points
Miami – 359 points
Wake Forest – 258 points
Clemson – 183 points
Virginia – 149 points
Pitt – 125 points

() Indicates first-place votes

Alexander-Tharpe Fund
The Alexander-Tharpe Fund is the fundraising arm of Georgia Tech athletics, providing scholarship, operations and facilities support for Georgia Tech’s 400-plus student-athletes. Be a part of developing Georgia Tech’s Everyday Champions and helping the Yellow Jackets compete for championships at the highest levels of college athletics by supporting the A-T Fund’s Annual Athletic Scholarship Fund, which directly provides scholarships for Georgia Tech student-athletes, and the Support The Swarm Fund, created to give fans an opportunity to help Georgia Tech athletics maintain its recent momentum through the financial challenges of the Covid-19 pandemic! To learn more about supporting the Yellow Jackets, visit atfund.org.  

 

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