Junior guard Nicole Redd is one of the key returners for the Eastern Oregon University women’s basketball team this year. Redd averaged 4.5 points, 1.42 assists and shot 31 percent from the field last season. EOU returns 10 players from its elite eight run last season. BRAD MOSHER - The Observer
Women dominate Cascade prediction with nine first place votes
The 2012-13 Eastern Oregon women’s basketball team has been picked to win the Cascade Collegiate Conference title after receiving nine out of 10 first-place votes in the preseason coaches poll.
After a stellar postseason performance last year, which included an elite eight appearance in the NAIA DII national tournament, Eastern is ready for a new year.
“I am very excited about the upcoming season,” stated veteran head coach Anji Weissenfluh.
“We have brought in a number of quality freshmen who will complement our returning group.”
Eastern returns 10 players from its elite eight run last year. Key returners include junior combo guard
Korrie Bourn who averaged 9.22 points per game and shot 42 percent from the field, senior guard Kelsea Hurliman who averaged 5.52 ppg and shot 32 percent from the three, junior guard Nicole Redd who averaged 4.5 ppg, 1.42 assists per game and shot 31 percent from the field and senior guard Brooke Randall, who averaged 10.9 points, 2.33 assists and 7.49 rebounds.
Bourn, a 5-10 guard/forward, earned All-Tournament second team honors at the NAIA D II championships.
If the Mountaineers can record a 20-win season this year, it will be their ninth in the past 12 years.
The Mountaineers, who earned 99 points in the poll, are coming off an historic season where they reached the elite eight.
Corban, the defending CCC champion, earned one first-place vote and 85 points in the second spot, with The College of Idaho picked third with 83 points in the preseason ranking.
Warner Pacific (63) placed fourth, and was followed by Oregon Tech (53), Southern Oregon (50), Northwest Christian (41), Concordia (35), Evergreen (23) and Northwest (14).
Eastern Oregon returns four starters and welcomes seven new players to the team.
Corban returns 10 players from its 2011-12 squad that won its first ever outright Cascade Conference title.
Top returnees for Corban include 5-foot, 10-inch senior forward Tess Bennett, an all-conference selection who averaged 12.4 points per game; 5-5 senior guard Emily Tsuagwa, who averaged 11.3 points per game; and 6-2 sophomore center Tara Vanweerdhuizen, who averaged 10.7 points.
College of Idaho is expected to be led by 5-7 senior guard Felicity Jones, who was a first team CCC performer as well as an honorable mention NAIA All-American.
The Yotes also return CCC honorable mention players Laura Geis (forward) and guard Katelin Shannon.
The top eight teams in the final CCC regular season standings will advance to the conference postseason tournament.
The Mountaineers will kick off their season against New Hope Christian on Oct. 26 at Quinn Coliseum.
The game begins at 5:30 p.m. The two teams will play a second game the following evening.
Live video and live stats are available on EOUSports.com.
Cascade Preseason Poll
1. Eastern Oregon (9) 99
2. Corban (1) 85
3. College of Idaho 83
4. Warner Pacific 63
5. Oregon Tech 53
6. Southern Oregon 50
7. Northwest Christian 41
8. Concordia 35
9. Evergreen 23
10. Northwest 14
First place votes in parentheses