“I am proud to have three of our players selected for preseason honors as representatives of the Western Athletic Conference,” said head coach Joan Bonvicini. “I am confident that Kacie Sowell, Ashley Ward, and Taelor Ross will be instrumental to our team’s success this year.”
Last season, Sowell recorded 18 double-doubles over the season and finished as the team’s leading scorer, averaging a double-double for the season (14.3 ppg, 10.2 rpg). She was also named to the Women’s Basketball Invitational All-Tournament Team, was named Independent Women’s Basketball Player of the Year, as well as CSM Independent Player of the Week six times over the season. Nationally, she also tied for ninth in NCAA Division I in double-doubles (18) and fifth in the nation in field-goal percentage (56.6 percent).
Ward finished the 2011-12 season averaging third on the team in scoring (10.3 ppg), assists (69), and made three-pointers (23). Nationally, she finished 26th in NCAA DI free-throw percentage (84.9 percent).
Ross is a 2012 graduate of St. Mary’s Academy in Portland, Ore., where she was a two-year varsity starter and helped lead her team to the 2011 and 2012 Mountain Hood Conference Playoffs. Basketball runs in her family, as she is the younger sister of former University of Washington standout, Terrence Ross.
The full list of WAC Preseason All-Conference Teams is as follows:
Coach of the Year: Jerry Finkbeiner (Utah State)
Player of the Year: Diamond Ford (Texas State)
Freshman of the Year: Taelor Ross (Seattle U)
First Team: Kacie Sowell (Seattle U), Diamond Ford (Texas State), Alyssa Charlston (Idaho), Whitney Frazier (Louisiana Tech), Banna Diop (Utah State)
Second Team: Krissy Karr (Idaho), Devyn Christensen (Utah State), Stacey Barr (Idaho), Ashley Ward (Seattle U), Brittany Lewis (Louisiana Tech)
The Redhawks will play two home exhibition games, hosting Simon Fraser on Thursday, Nov. 1 at 7 p.m. and Western Washington on Saturday, Nov. 3 at 4 p.m. before opening the 2012-13 regular season versus Pacific on Friday, Nov. 9 at 7 p.m.