Media Picks Women's Basketball To Finish Second In Preseason Pac-10 Poll

Oct. 31, 2002

WALNUT CREEK, Calif. - The Washington women's basketball team was picked to finish second in the Pac-10 this season, according to a poll of media members who cover Pac-10 women's basketball on a regular basis.

The Huskies received two first-place votes, with the other 17 going to Stanford who was tabbed by the media to defend its Pac-10 title.

The Huskies return five starters and 11 letterwinners from last year's squad that tied for second in the conference and advanced to the third round of the WNIT. Washington opens its 29th season of women's basketball with an exhibition game vs. Bay Area Pro-Am, Sunday, Nov. 10, at 1 p.m. at Bank of America Arena. The Huskies will make their regular season debut at Boise State, Friday, Nov. 22, with a 7 p.m. (MT ) tip-off.

Stanford finished 32-3 overall and advanced to the Sweet Sixteen of the NCAA Tournament last season. The Cardinal made its 15th straight NCAA Tournament appearance last season. This is the third straight year that Stanford has been picked by the media as the Conference preseason favorite.

UW senior All-America candidate Loree Payne, an All-Pac-10 selection last year, was named to the Preseason All-Conference Team. Joining Payne are three other returning All-Pac-10 players - USC's Ebony Hoffman, Stanford's Nicole Powell and Oregon's Shaquala Williams. UCLA guard, Michelle Greco, a 2001 Preseason All-Conference selection who sat out the majority of last year due to injury, was also named to the team.

The 2002-03 season will culminate with the State Farm Pac-10 Women's Basketball Tournament, Mar. 7-10 at HP Pavilion at San Jose. All 10 universities will participate in the tournament, with the winner receiving the Conference's automatic bid to the 2003 NCAA Tournament. The team that finishes the season atop the Pac-10 standings, based on double round robin play, is the Conference Champion. The bracket of the Pac-10 women's tournament will be seeded according to the final standings, with the league champion earning the top seed.

(first-place votes in parentheses)
Team Points
1. Stanford (17) 188
2. Washington (2) 160
3. Oregon 140
4. USC 134
5. Arizona 107
6. Arizona State 101
7. UCLA 74
8. Oregon State 72
9. California 45
10. Washington State 19

Name School Pos Yr Ht Hometown
Michelle Greco UCLA G Sr. 5-9 La Crescenta, Calif.
Ebony Hoffman USC F Jr. 6-2 Harbor City, Calif.
Loree Payne WASH G Sr. 6-0 Havre, Mont.
Nicole Powell STAN F Jr. 6-2 Phoenix, Ariz.
Shaquala Williams ORE G Sr. 5-6 Portland, Ore.

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