AUM men picked ninth, women sixth in SSAC hoops preseason poll
Under the direction of first-year head coach Michael Cheaney, the Auburn Montgomery basketball team was picked ninth in the 2014 Southern States Athletic Conference men’s basketball Coaches’ preseason poll.
The Warhawks, who finished 9-18 overall and 6-12 in conference play last season, earned 52 points in the preseason poll, five points ahead of Belhaven.
Defending regular-season and tournament champion William Carey earned the top spot in the poll, collecting 128 points and seven first-place votes. Dalton State was selected second, finishing five points behind and with three first-place votes. Martin Methodist was chosen third with 111 points, while Bethel and Faulkner rounded out the top five with 102 and 92 points, respectively.
Mobile secured the sixth spot in the poll, earning 78 points, followed by Loyola and Coastal Georgia. Blue Mountain and Brewton-Parker closed out the preseason poll.
AUM will open the 2014-15 season Friday when it takes on Concordia in its opening game in the Jimmy Faulkner Classic, hosted by Faulkner University. Tip-off is slated for 3 p.m. at Tine Davis Gymnasium.
Lady Warhawks picked sixth
The AUM women’s basketball team was tabbed sixth in the Southern States Athletic Conference Women’s Basketball coaches’ preseason poll.
After finishing 14-15 overall and 9-11 in conference play last season, the Warhawks earned 83 points in the preseason poll, just five points behind local rival Faulkner.
Loyola, one of four SSAC teams to qualify for the NAIA National Tournament last season, was chosen as the preseason favorite, earning 125 total points and 6-of-11 first-place votes. Bethel was just two points behind the Wolfpack with 123 points and the remaining five first-place votes. Defending conference tournament champion Mobile was picked third with 106 points, while Martin Methodist was fourth with 90 points. Faulkner rounded out the top by with 88 points.
Following AUM in the poll was Coastal Georgia with 65 points, Belhaven with 53, William Carey with 41 and Brenau closely behind at 40. Blue Mountain and Brewton-Parker completed the poll.
The Warhawks lost their top scorer in Katie Williams, but return their next seven from last season, including senior all-conference center Tina Odume. In all, AUM returns nine letterwinners.
AUM will open the 2014-15 season Friday, Oct. 31, when it takes on Concordia Selma in its opening game in the Jimmy Faulkner Classic, hosted by Faulkner University. Tip-off is slated for 3 p.m. at Tine Davis Gymnasium.
SSAC women’s basketball poll (first place votes)
1. Loyola (6) - 125
2. Bethel (5) – 123
3. Mobile - 106
4. Martin Methodist - 90
5. Faulkner - 88
6. AUM - 83
7. Coastal Georgia - 65
8. Belhaven - 53
9. William Carey - 41
10. Brenau - 40
11. Blue Mountain – 32
12. Brewton-Parker – 12
SSAC men’s basketball poll
1. William Carey (7) - 128
2. Dalton State (3) – 123
3. Martin Methodist – 111
4. Bethel (1) – 102
5. Faulkner – 92
6. Mobile – 78
7. Loyola (1) – 73
8. Coastal Georgia – 72
9. AUM – 52
10. Belhaven – 47
11. Blue Mountain – 33
12. Brewton-Parker – 25