The Wyoming women’s basketball team was picked to finish eighth as the MW announced its 2016-17 preseason women’s basketball poll and all-conference team on Wednesday. The voting panel consisted of the league’s 11 head coaches and select women’s basketball media.
“There are a number of factors that contribute to a preseason selection and the actual finish,” head coach Joe Legerski said. “Some factors you can control and some you cannot. This young team continues to focus on the challenges ahead and the goal of maximizing their talent level.”
Colorado State, the defending champion, was tabbed as the preseason league favorite for the third straight year. The Rams received 17 first-place votes and 283 points. Boise State was picked second with 11 first-place votes and 271 points, ahead of Fresno State with 225 points. UNLV placed fourth with 201 points, edging out San Jose State with 197 points, New Mexico earned a first-place vote and 176 points for the sixth spot. San Diego State was picked seventh with 126 points followed by Wyoming in eighth (123), Utah State in ninth (97 points), Nevada in tenth (66 points) and Air Force in 11th (28 points).
Colorado State senior guard Ellen Nystrom was named the 2016-17 MW Preseason Player of the Year. Nystrom led the Rams to their third consecutive regular season title a year ago. She finished averaging 11.1 points, 5.7 assists and 5.8 boards. Nystrom is joined on the preseason team by Boise State senior Brooke Pahukoa, Fresno State junior Bego Faz Davalos, New Mexico junior Cherise Beynon and senior Dezz Ramos from San José State. New Mexico guard Mykiel Burleson was named Preseason Freshman of the Year while Hallie Gennett from San José State was selected Preseason Newcomer of the Year honors.
The Cowgirls will open up the exhibition season on Friday, Nov. 4 as they host the South Dakota Mines Lady Hardrockers. Game time is set for 6:30 p.m. MT. in the Arena-Auditorium.
2016-17 MOUNTAIN WEST CONFERENCE PRESEASON POLL
Rk. Team (1st-place votes) Points
1. Colorado State (17) 283
2. Boise State (11) 271
3. Fresno State 225
4. UNLV 201
5. San José State 197
6. New Mexico (1) 176
7. San Diego State 126
8. Wyoming 123
9. Utah State 97
10. Nevada 66
11. Air Force 28
2016-17 MOUNTAIN WEST PRESEASON ALL-CONFERENCE TEAM
Name, Class, Position Institution
Brooke Pahukoa, Sr., G Boise State
Ellen Nystrom, Sr., G Colorado State
Bego Faz Davalos, Jr., C Fresno State
Cherise Beynon, Jr.,G New Mexico
Dezz Ramos, Sr.,PG San José State
Preseason Player of the Year
Ellen Nystrom, Sr., G, Colorado State
Preseason Freshman of the Year
Mykiel Burleson, Fr., G, New Mexico
Preseason Newcomer of the Year
Hallie Gennett, Jr., F, San José State