PRINCETON, N.J. - The Ivy League released the 2012-13 preseason women's basketball poll today (Oct. 24) and the Dartmouth women were picked to finish seventh. Three-time defending Ivy League champion, Princeton, was picked to defend its title receiving 13 of the 17 first-place votes for 132 points. Harvard picked up four first-place votes and came in second with a total of 120 points while Yale earned 96 points to round out the top three.
Rounding out the poll, Penn received 76 points for fourth place, while Brown garnered 61 points for fifth place. Cornell was in sixth with 58 points while Columbia took eighth place with 23 points.
The vote of 17 voters, two from each institution, and one national representative comprise the voters for the poll.
Head coach Chris Wielgus is back on the sidelines for her 28th season as head coach and again will feature a young squad. Wielgus will rely on lone senior and co-captain Faziah Steen (Detroit, Mich.) to lead the squad that features 11 underclassmen, including a seven-member freshman class. Steen is Dartmouth's top returner from 2011-12 and averaged 15.4 points during her junior campaign. Steen's co-captain is junior Nicola Zimmer (Chevy Chase, Md.), who started 26 games at point guard last season.
The Big Green is coming off a 2011-12 season that saw some ups and downs. Dartmouth returns three-time All-Ivy League, Steen who became Dartmouth's 16th 1,000-point scorer in 2011-12 and enters the season with 1,025 career points placing her 15th on Dartmouth's all-time scoring list.
Dartmouth will also rely heavily on juniors Zimmer and Eve Zelinger (Palo Alto, Calif.). Zimmer played her first collegiate season in 2011-12 after going down with injury during her rookie campaign. Zimmer ranked third in the Ivy League with 3.5 assists per game and fifth in minutes playing 33.3 per game. Zelinger saw action in 26 games with two starts and posted a career-high 16 points in a win over Columbia.
Big Green sophomores Tia Dawson (Cedar Rapids, Iowa) and Milica Toskovic (Santa Barbara, Calif.) saw significant time as freshmen. Dawson, a two-time Ivy League Rookie of the Week in 2011-12, started 27 games and led the team in rebounds with 7.0 boards per game. She also lead the Ivy League in blocked shots with 1.7 rejections per game and was third in rebounding. Toskovic, also a two-time Ivy League Rookie of the Week selection, played in 25 games with 19 starts and twice posted a career-high 17 points. Kamala Thompson (Selden, N.Y.) made 10 starts and saw action in 22 games with three games in double figures. Dartmouth will also gain the services of Abbey Schmitt (Winnetka, Ill.) who sat out the 2011-12 season with injury.
Donning the Green and White for the first time this season are Kasey Crockett (Southfield, Mich.), Daisy Jordan (Worcester, Mass.) Kaitana Martinez (Hailey, Idaho), Lakin Roland (Jeffersonville, Ind.), Sofia Roman (White Plains, N.Y.), Lauren Taiclet (Wellesley, Mass.) and Jordyn Turner (Plymouth Meeting, Pa.) The seven-member freshman class brings a wealth of experience and will be called upon to uphold the tradition of Dartmouth women's basketball.
Dartmouth opens the 2012-13 campaign on Nov. 10 when they travel to Smithfield, R.I., to take on Bryant University in an afternoon matinee. The Big Green will open the home slate on Nov. 13 when BYU make its first-ever trip to Leede Arena. The game will tipoff at 5 p.m. and is a first game of a doubleheader with the Dartmouth men's basketball team.
IVY LEAGUE WOMEN'S BASKETBALL PRESEASON MEDIA POLL
PREDICTED ORDER OF FINISH
First-Place Votes in Parentheses