Mountain Lions picked to finish 12th

By Sarah Trujillo published October 30, 2009

While motivation wasnâ€TMt lacking, the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs womenâ€TMs basketball team got a big boost in that area on Wednesday with the press release of the Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference Preseason Poll. The Mountain Lions were picked to finish last in the East Division and 12th overall by conference coaches.

The coaches ranked conference teams from 1-13, omitting their own team. The points were then added to determine the predicted finish with the lowest point total being the top pick. UCCS received 144 points, ranking ahead of only Mesa State (154) and New Mexico Highlands (159).

Fort Lewis received 13 first-place votes, the maximum possible, to rank atop both the West Division and the conference as a whole. Colorado School of Mines was picked to win the East Division and take second overall with 35 points. Those schools were followed by Colorado State-Pueblo (53), Colorado Christian (61), Nebraska-Kearney (61), Regis (72), Metro State (75), Adams State (85), Western State (89) and Western New Mexico (136).

With 300 wins as a Division II head coach, Steve Kirkham, who is also the school's athletic director, will be the Mountain Lionsâ€TM new head coach. During his career in Division II, Kirkham led then-powerhouse Mesa State to four RMAC championships. At the time of his retirement, Kirkham was the winningest womenâ€TMs basketball coach in RMAC history.

The Mountain Lions return four starters from last year's team that went 8-19 overall and 6-13 in the RMAC. Point guard janean Jubic, forward Mallory Lowe, guard Jessica Lynch and wing Lauren Holm are all back. Also returning are 3-point specialist Payden Ackerman, forward Ashley Miller, point guard Karlee Gradisar and promising center Audy Bell. Those players are joined by transfers Alyse Bessert (center), Caley Fisher (forward) and Katelyn Coutee (forward), plus freshmen Laura Wolfinger (guard) and Kallie Jiblits (forward).

The Mountain Lions will open their season with an exhibition game against the Air Force Falcons on Nov. 6th.


For the complete poll, Click Here.

UCCS Players/Staff Featured

Lauren HolmLauren Holm22G
Lauren HolmLauren Holm22G
Lauren HolmLauren Holm22G
Lauren HolmLauren Holm22G
Kallie JibletsKallie Jiblets30F
Kallie JibletsKallie Jiblets30F
Audy BellAudy Bell31C
Audy BellAudy Bell31C
Jessica LynchJessica Lynch2G
Jessica LynchJessica Lynch2G
Caley FisherCaley Fisher5F
Katelyn CouteeKatelyn Coutee33F
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