HATS OFF to the Minnesota Women's Basketball team! Their 10 game win streak and 3-0 first place start to the Big Ten season has caught the eye of writers across the country. The Gophers are ranked #23 in the latest AP poll. From the U's press release:
"I am thrilled for our team and program to be recognized by the national media with a return to the top 25," head coach Marlene Stollings said. "Our young ladies have faced adversity head on with the loss of Rachel Banham and have flourished. We teach our young ladies that basketball is a microcosm of life, and you have a choice when faced with difficult situations, you can step up and fight or you can be deflated and defeated. This team has shown resiliency, grit, toughness and character in light of difficulty and I couldn’t be more proud of them at this point in our season."
The Gophers sit atop league standings as the only Big Ten squad with three wins and are riding a 10-game winning streak that dates back to Nov. 29. Even more impressive, the last five wins have come without Preseason Big Ten Player of the Year and National Player of the Year candidate Rachel Banham, who will miss the remainder of the season with a torn ACL in her right knee suffered at North Dakota on Dec. 10.
Minnesota’s 14-1 record is its best since the 2003-04, when it tallied a 15-0 record to begin its Final Four season, while it also ties the best start for a first-year Gopher head women’s basketball coach in program history.
The ranking is the first in quite a while for the Gophers:
The last time @GophersWBB was ranked in the AP poll was in 2005-06 and in the USA Today/ESPN poll once in 2008-09.— Marcus R. Fuller (@GophersNow) January 5, 2015
Minnesota will have a chance to continue to climb in the AP rankings this weekend when they host #12 Maryland at The Barn. Best of all, the game will be televised on ESPN2. Make sure to check them out at 2pm this Sunday!
Here's the full Top 25 table, via ESPN: