Stonehill leads a list of four NE-10 teams ranked in the NCAA Regional Top 10. (PHOTO BY Lewis Glass/SportsPix)
NE-10 Northeast Division Champion Skyhawks ranked first in debut ranking by NCAA II East Regional advisory committee
EASTON, Mass. (February 19, 2015) – Stonehill College, which has clinched the Northeast-10 Conference's Northeast Division championship, is ranked No. 1 in the first NCAA Division II Women's Basketball East Regional rankings released by the national tournament committee on Wednesday.
Stonehill (20-3, 16-3 NE-10), winners of 15 of its last 17 despite a setback at Franklin Pierce University last night, leads the East Regional rankings which are used to determine NCAA Tournament bids. Each of the three tournament champions in the East Region receives automatic bids to the NCAAs, with five additional at large bids. The 2014 NCAA Tournament regional rounds will run March 13 through 16 at campus sites to be announced when the Division II's field of 64 is released on Sunday, March 8.
Three Northeast-10 programs lead the regional rankings with Adelphi University (23-3, 16-2 NE-10) ranked second and the University of New Haven (22-3, 16-3 NE-10) third. University of the District of Columbia (22-3, 15-2 ECC) of the East Coast Conference is ranked fourth, with Central Atlantic Collegiate Conference member University of the Sciences (18-5, 14-2 CACC) ranked fifth. New York Institute of Technology (16-8, 11-5 ECC) is ranked sixth, Franklin Pierce (16-8, 12-7 NE-10) seventh, Philadelphia University (18-5, 12-3 CACC) eighth, Queens College (17-6, 12-4 ECC) ninth and LIU Post (15-9, 11-5 ECC) tenth.
Stonehill is 3-2 this season against teams ranked in the first East Regional ranking. The Skyhawks are ranked No. 8 in this week's D2SIDA Top 25 media poll and 10th in the USA TODAY Sports/Women's Basketball Coaches Association (WBCA) Division II poll, while also being ranked No. 1 in the D2SIDA East Regional poll. Stonehill has made two straight NCAA Tournament appearances and have earned 22 NCAA bids in program history, a total which ranks fourth all-time in Division II. The Skyhawks have already clinched a 34th straight Northeast-10 Tournament berth and they and Bentley are the only two programs to participate in all 33 previous NE-10 Tournaments to date.
Stonehill is back in action on Saturday night when it hosts Bentley for the 100th meeting all-time between the two NE-10 archrivals on Senior Night on Paula Sullivan Court at Merkert Gymnasium at 5 p.m. Prior to tipoff, Stonehill will honor its four seniors playing in their final regular season home game Saturday night. The Skyhawks senior class is Tori Faieta (Lynn, Massachusetts/Saint Mary's), Ashley Gendron (Auburn, New Hampshire/Manchester Memorial), Jamie Panton (Williston, Vermont/Essex) and captain Amy Pelletier (Beverly, Massachusetts/Bishop Fenwick).
Please note the time change on Saturday's game from its original 1:30 p.m., start time. Admission will also be free for alumnae of both programs.