One season after grabbing a rare at-large berth for a Summit League team in the NCAA Tournament, South Dakota is the preseason favorite to win the conference.

The 2019-20 Coyotes were named first on 20 of the 34 ballots cast by the media to grab the school's first-ever number-one preseason ranking in the league.

USD went 28-6 last season and finished second to South Dakota State in the Summit League regular season before falling to the Jackrabbits in the Summit League Tournament title game.

The Coyotes became just the second league school to grab an at-large berth in the NCAA Tournament, losing in the first round to Clemson.

SDSU is picked second in the preseason Summit League poll.

The Jackrabbits were 28-7 last season and made their first-ever Sweet 16 appearance in the NCAA Tournament after wins over Quinnipiac and Syracuse before falling to Oregon. SDSU ended the season ranked 22nd in the final edition of the USA Today Sports Women's Basketball Poll.

Preseason Summit League Coaches Poll

  1. South Dakota
  2. South Dakota State
  3. Denver
  4. Oral Roberts
  5. Western Illinois
  6. North Dakota
  7. North Dakota State
  8. Omaha
  9. Purdue Fort Wayne

South Dakota senior Ciara Duffy is the preseason Player of the Year.

The Rapid City native led the Coyotes for the second-straight year in scoring at 15 points a game last year.

She's joined on the first team by junior teammate Hannah Sjerven, who averaged 12 points and six rebounds a game last season.

South Dakota State senior Tagyn Larson and junior Myah Selland are also in the first-team.

Larson, a Sioux Falls native, averaged 11 points and six rebounds in 2018-19. Selland, a Letcher native, averaged 13 points and five rebounds a game.

Preseason All-Summit League First Team

  • Ciara Duffy, South Dakota (Pre-Season Player of Year)
  • Hannah Sjerven, South Dakota
  • Tagyn Larson, South Dakota State
  • Myah Selland, South Dakota State
  • Lauren Loven, Denver
  • Madison Nelson, Denver

South Dakota opens the 2019-20 season November 5 at Northeastern.

South Dakota State starts October 30 with a home exhibition against St. Cloud State. The Jackrabbits' first regular-season game is November 8 at Drake.


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