SPRINGFIELD, Mass. – The Western New England University women's basketball team has been selected as the Commonwealth Coast Conference (CCC) preseason favorite heading into the 2019-20 campaign, the league office announced on Thursday morning.
The Golden Bears received 75 points and four first-place votes in the CCC Preseason Poll, which is voted by all nine head coaches in the league. Endicott, the 2018-19 runner-up, was picked second with 70 points and three first-place nods, while the University of New England placed third with 69 points and the final two first-place tallies.
Roger Williams (56 points) and Curry (39) rounded out the top five in the poll, followed by Gordon (34), Salve Regina (33), Nichols (19) and Wentworth (10).
Western New England is coming off a historic 2018-19 campaign that saw the Golden Bears capture their first CCC title and reach the NCAA Tournament for the first time in program history.
Nicole Chaszar begins her 15th season as head coach in 2019-20 with a career record of 226-155 (.593). Chaszar's squad features five seniors, including Meghan Orbann (East Hampton, Conn.) and Emily Farrell (New Fairfield, Conn.), who both earned All-CCC first team honors last season. Orbann averaged 12.7 points and 7.3 rebounds per game, while Farrell contributed a team-high 13.7 points and 4.1 assists per game. Senior forward Courtney Carlson (Woodbury, Conn.), who started 28 of 29 contests and scored a team-high 18 points in the title-clinching win over Endicott, will also be a key contributor for the Golden Bears.
Western New England opens its 2019-20 campaign at home against Suffolk on Saturday, November 9. Later in the month, CCC play gets underway when the Golden Bears host Roger Williams on Saturday, November 30.