TCU Rated 19th in All-Star Girls Report Preseason Poll
Sept. 25, 2002
FORT WORTH, Texas (Sept. 25, 2002) -- The TCU women's basketball team is holding down the 19th spot in the All-Star Girls Report's preseason top 25 list, it was announced today. The Lady Frogs, who advanced to the second round of the NCAA Tournament for the second consecutive season, finished the 2001-02 campaign ranked 25th in the final ESPN/USA Today Coaches Poll.
"They are very athletic and talented and should score a lot of points. They will be the class of Conference USA again," ASGR wrote.
In 2001-02, TCU won the regular season conference crown in the school's first season in C-USA and posted a 24-7 overall record.
This year, TCU will be led by sophomore Sandora Irvin, who was selected to ASGR's preseason fifth-team All-America squad. The 6-4 post averaged 10.8 points, 9.5 rebounds and 2.7 blocks per game as a freshman, and set school single-season records for rebounds and blocked shots.
Two other starters from last year's squad, Ebony Shaw (8.6 ppg, 4.4 rpg) and Tiffany Evans (8.2 ppg, 6.0 rpg), are also back for TCU. The Lady Frogs lost a pair of starters, Kati Safaritova (13.9 ppg, 4.1 rpg) and Ashanti Nix (5.9 ppg, 3.4 apg), to graduation. However, senior guard Tricia Payne, the team's 2000-01 Most Valuable Player (11.2 ppg, 3.0 rpg), returns for her final campaign after sitting out the entire 2001-02 season due to a torn ACL.
Other letterwinners returning for TCU are guard Candace Baldwin (5.8 ppg, 2.5 apg), guard Ashley Browning (3.6 ppg, 1.3 rpg), forward Grace Gantt (8.6 ppg, 3.5 rpg) and forward Niki Newton (5.6 ppg, 2.5 rpg). The Lady Frogs also boast several highly-touted newcomers: forward Ashley Davis, center Stephanie Faulkner, guard Andrea Honer, guard Kim Ortega, forward Amy Pack, center Lindsey Prewitt and forward Tracy Wynn.
The Lady Frogs were the only Conference USA school to receive billing by ASGR. However, TCU, which has one of the nation's toughest nonconference schedules, has matchups with at least six, and potentially seven, teams rated in the ASGR preseason top 25. The list includes: No. 2 Tennessee, No. 7 Texas, No. 8 Vanderbilt, No. 9 Purdue (possible opponent), No. 18 Oregon, No. 21 Arkansas and No. 22 Oklahoma.
TCU opens its exhibition season on Sun., Nov. 10. The Lady Frogs' first regular season game is set for Fri., Nov. 22 against Utah.
All-Star Girls Report