The Oglethorpe women's basketball team held down the No. 19 spot in the preseason edition of the NCAA Division III Top 25 Coaches' Poll, released this week by the Women's Basketball Coaches Association. It marked the first time the Stormy Petrels have been ranked in the organization's preseason poll since coming in at No. 2 prior to the 2008-09 campaign.
The Petrels finished the 2018-19 season tied for 23rd in the final coaches' poll after advancing to the second round of the NCAA Division III Women's Basketball Championship for the first time since that 2008-09 season. They defeated Chicago 57-51 in their first-round matchup in Lexington, Kentucky, in early March, and finished the season 23-7 overall.
Amherst earned the top spot in the poll and garnered five of a possible eight first-place votes, while Tufts began the season at No. 2. Wartburg garnered another first-place vote and held down the No. 3 spot, while St. Thomas (Minnesota) took the other two and tips off their season at No. 4. Scranton begins their season in the No. 5 spot. Bowdoin, Texas-Dallas, Wisconsin-Oshkosh, Hope and Messiah rounded out the top 10.
The Petrels served as the only SAA team to receive votes in the preseason poll.
Oglethorpe also earned votes in the preseason D3hoops.com Women's Top 25, the other of the two major polls. They were also the only SAA team to garner votes in that poll.
The Petrels get their season started Saturday and Sunday when they host the SAA-USA South Classic at Dorough Field House. They'll take on LaGrange Saturday at 5 p.m. and Piedmont Sunday at 4 p.m.