TERRE HAUTE, IND. – The Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology women’s basketball team was picked to finish seventh in a tough Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference in the 2013-14 Coaches Preseason Poll released Tuesday.
The Engineers finished the 2012-13 campaign with a 12-14 overall record and an 8-10 (sixth place) mark in the HCAC, reaching the conference tournament for the third straight year and the eighth time in 10 years.
Rose-Hulman returns nine letter winners and four starters from last year’s team. The Engineers’ biggest win came on the road in a late-season upset of 2013 HCAC regular-season champion Transylvania.
Senior Kelsey Ploof (Noblesville, Ind./Noblesville) is the Engineers’ top returning scorer after averaging nearly a double-double with 10.7 points and 9.2 rebounds per contest. Fellow senior Lauren Meadows (Indianapolis, Ind./Brebeuf) is also back after averaging 9.3 points per game prior to missing 14 games to injury.
With seven first-place votes, Transylvania was picked to win the conference for the 2012-13 campaign, after finishing 21-6, 16-2 in the HCAC. The Pioneers were followed by second-place Franklin College (two first-place votes) and Hanover College (one vote).
The Pioneers return junior guard Nicole Coffman, who led the team in scoring (19.8 points per game) and was named the 2012-13 HCAC Most Valuable Player.
Rose-Hulman opens the season Friday, Nov. 15, when the Engineers play host to Indiana University-South Bend at Hulbert Arena for a 7:30 p.m. tilt.
2013-14 WOMEN’S BASKETBALL PRESEASON COACHES’ POLL
Team Points (first place votes)
1. Transylvania 94 (7)
2. Franklin 89 (2)
3. Hanover 79 (1)
4. Defiance 65
5. Manchester 60
6. Bluffton 50
7. Rose-Hulman 46
8. Earlham 28
9. Anderson 25
10. Mount St. Joseph 14