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Gonzaga women ranked 20th in preseason coaches’ poll

UPDATED: Thu., Nov. 19, 2020

Gonzaga guard Jill Townsend (32) beats pressure from guard McKayla Williams (24) during Fan Fest, Tuesday, Nov. 10 2020, in the McCarthey Athletic Center.  (Dan Pelle/THESPOKESMAN-REVIEW)
Gonzaga guard Jill Townsend (32) beats pressure from guard McKayla Williams (24) during Fan Fest, Tuesday, Nov. 10 2020, in the McCarthey Athletic Center. (Dan Pelle/THESPOKESMAN-REVIEW)

In another preseason milestone, the Gonzaga women’s basketball team opened the year ranked 20th in the first USA Today/WCBA Coaches poll released Thursday.

The No. 20 ranking is the highest in a preseason poll in program history. GU opened the 2019-20 season ranked 23rd in the coaches’ poll.

Last season, Gonzaga rose to a program-best regular-season ranking in the coaches’ poll, earning a No. 10 ranking on Feb. 25.

Gonzaga’s highest ranking in the poll came in the 2011 postseason, following its run to the Elite Eight.

The Zags were selected as No. 8 in the postseason poll, released on April 6, 2011.

South Carolina, which the Zags are slated to play Nov. 30 as part of the Bad Boy Mowers Crossover Classic in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, grabbed the top spot in the poll with 799 points and 31 first-place votes.

The Gamecocks are also the top-ranked team in The Associated Press preseason poll, which was released last week.

Stanford, which had been scheduled to visit the Kennel before COVID-19 restrictions altered the nonconference schedule, earned the final first-place vote and was ranked second with 740 points.

UConn earned a No. 3 ranking with 732 points, Baylor at No. 4 with 702 points and Louisville at No. 5 with 663 points.

Gonzaga, ranked 21st in the Associated Press poll, opens the season on Nov. 28 against Oklahoma in the first game of the Bad Boy Mowers tournament.

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