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No. 23 South Dakota State women's basketball ranked in top-25 preseason poll for first time

The Jacks are coming off a 29-9 season that concluded with a WNIT championship victory at Frost Arena.

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South Dakota State's Haleigh Timmer (13) absorbs contact from Minnesota's Alanna Micheaux while attempting to finish near the basket during the second half of a Women's National Invitational Tournament contest on Sunday, March 20, 2022, at Frost Arena, in Brookings.
Landon Dierks / Mitchell Republic
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BROOKINGS — For the first time in program history, the South Dakota State women's basketball team is ranked in the Associated Press preseason top-25 poll.

The Jackrabbits check in at No. 23 with 67 total votes on the poll, which was released Tuesday. The Jacks are coming off a 29-9 season that concluded with a WNIT championship victory at Frost Arena.

SDSU returns six of its top seven scorers from last year, including 2022 WNIT MVP and 2022 Summit League Preseason Player of the Year Myah Selland. Paige Meyer and Paiton Burckhard, both Summit League preseason first team selections, and Tori Nelson, a Summit League preseason second team pick, are also back for the Jacks.

The Jackrabbits officially open the season with No. 21-ranked Creighton on November 7 at Frost Arena.

Defending national champion South Carolina is the unanimous No. 1 in the Top 25 rankings. SDSU and South Carolina will play on Dec. 15 at the Sanford Pentagon in Sioux Falls.

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Head coach Dawn Staley’s Gamecocks received all 30 first-place ballots and enter the season in the top spot for the third consecutive campaign. South Carolina went wire-to-wire at No. 1 and finished 35-2 last season, beating Connecticut 64-49 on April 3 to claim the program’s second NCAA Tournament title (also 2017).

Stanford, Texas, Iowa and Tennessee round out the top five. It is the highest ranking for the Hawkeyes since 1994. UConn opens at No. 6, followed by Louisville, Iowa State, Notre Dame and North Carolina State.

The Big Ten leads the way with six ranked teams, with Iowa joined by No. 11 Indiana, No. 14 Ohio State, No. 17 Maryland, No. 22 Nebraska and No. 25 Michigan.

South Dakota, which made the NCAA Sweet 16 a season ago but has a new coach in Kayla Karius, received nine vote-points in the preseason poll.

Field Level Media contributed to this report.

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