The Wayne State College women’s basketball team was selected 11th overall and fifth in the South Division in the Preseason NSIC Women’s Basketball Coaches Poll released Thursday morning by the league office in Burnsville, Minnesota. For the second straight year, Wayne State forward Erin Norling was selected as the Wildcat Player to Watch in the NSIC this season.
The Wildcats received 103 points in voting done by coaches throughout the league. Wayne State returns three starters and eight letter winners from last year’s team that was 15-15 overall and 9-13 in the NSIC.
MSU Moorhead edged Sioux Falls as the preseason favorite with the Dragons receiving 217 points and nine first place votes compared to 214 points and six first place votes for USF. Minnesota Duluth was third at 194 points with the remaining first place vote. Augustana (169) and Minnesota State (156) closed out the top five teams in the poll.
In the NSIC South Division, Sioux Falls was the unanimous choice to win the division with 49 points and seven first place votes (cannot vote for your own team). Augustana was second with 39 points followed by Minnesota State with 35 points and the remaining first place vote. Rounding out the South Division poll were Winona State (28), Wayne State (25), Southwest Minnesota State (21), Concordia-St. Paul (20) and Upper Iowa (7).
The Wildcat Player to Watch this season is junior Erin Norling. A 5’11” forward from Loretto, Minnesota, Norling was a First-Team All-NSIC selection last season after leading the Wildcats in scoring at 15.7 points per game. She ranked sixth in the league in scoring while reaching double figures in 28 of 30 contests. Norling shot 42.7% from the field and 78.3% at the free throw line and also grabbed 5.5 rebounds per game.
Wayne State will open the 2019-20 regular season at the MIAA/NSIC Crossover in Kearney on Friday, November 8th when the Wildcats face Northwest Missouri State at 5:30 p.m.