BOSTON - The University of New Hampshire women's basketball team was picked to finish fourth in America East in the preseason coaches poll released today. The University of Delaware was the coaches choice for the top spot in the league, garnering six place votes. The University of Vermont, last season's champion, garnered the other four first place votes.
Head coach Sue Johnson returns nine players from last year's 13-15 squad and the nucleus of the team that went 19-8 and earned UNH's first-ever postseason berth, a WNIT bid, in 1998-99. The starting backcourt of senior Kelly Donohue (Rochester, N.H.) and junior Kiki Proctor (Harrisburg, Pa.) returns for the third-straight year.
Other top returnees for the 'Cats include senior co-captains Sarah Bushey (Champlain, N.Y.) and Kim Kassik (Kitchener, Ontario) and juniors Heidi Plencner (Hampton, N.H.) and Anna Matthias (Guilford, Conn.).
UNH's first exhibition game is a November 7 contest against the Netherlands National Team at 7 p.m. The 'Cats open their 2000-01 campaign at home against Brown on November 17. Game time at Lundholm Gymnasium is 7 p.m.
The 2000-01 preseason All-Conference team was also released today. Named to that squad were Danielle Leyfert and Cindy Johnson of Delaware, Morgan Hall of Vermont, Janeka Lopp of Hartford and Lani Lawrence of Northeastern.