KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- Rachelle Sayers knew a challenging non-conference schedule would be beneficial for her Carroll College women's basketball team. Coaches around the nation agree.
Sayers and the Saints vaulted 14 spots to No. 6 in the latest NAIA women's basketball coaches' poll, which was released on Wednesday. Carroll has surged to a 5-0 mark this season, including an impressive win over then-No. 11 Concordia in early November. The Bulldogs have since tumbled out of the top 25.
Carroll also posted a lopsided 99-48 thrashing over former Frontier Conference rival Lewis-Clark State during the Thanksgiving Classic in Helena on Nov. 28.
Carroll has seen its last five games canceled or postponed due to COVID-19 concerns but returns to the court on Thursday at rival Montana Tech. It will be the first conference game of the season for Sayers and the Saints. The game is scheduled to tip at 5 p.m. in Butte.
The University of Providence found itself ranked in the first in-season edition of the coaches' poll. The Argos have yet to play a game and aren't scheduled to take the court until January, but received 105 votes to slide into the rankings.
Rocky Mountain College is receiving votes in the latest poll, which can be found below.
2020-21 NAIA women's basketball coaches' poll
Week of Dec. 16, 2020
|RANK||LAST TIME||SCHOOL [FIRST PLACE VOTES]||RECORD||POINTS|
|1||1||Westmont (Calif.) ||0-1||581|
|2||2||Wayland Baptist (Texas) ||2-0||566|
|2||4||Campbellsville (Ky.) ||4-0||566|
|4||5||The Master's (Calif.)||1-0||522|
|7||9||Shawnee State (Ohio)||8-0||470|
|8||14||Thomas More (Ky.)||6-0||461|
|12||16||St. Francis (Ill.)||7-1||360|
|15||12||College of the Ozarks (Mo.)||0-0||312|
|17||NR||MidAmerica Nazarene (Kan.)||7-2||299|
|19||NR||Lindsey Wilson (Ky.)||8-1||271|
|21||23||Saint Xavier (Ill.)||2-0||181|
|25||NR||Providence (Mont.) (Mont.)||0-0||105|
Dropped from the Top 25: Our Lady of the Lake (Texas), Central Methodist (Mo.), Dordt (Iowa), Concordia (Neb.)
Receiving Votes: Dakota State (S.D.) 101, Indiana Wesleyan 83, Loyola (La.) 73, Lewis-Clark State (Idaho) 67, Midland (Neb.) 53, Grand View (Iowa) 43, Bryan (Tenn.) 42, LSU Shreveport (La.) 26, Briar Cliff (Iowa) 26, Our Lady of the Lake (Texas) 14, Rocky Mountain (Mont.) 11, Mid-America Christian (Okla.) 9, Rust (Miss.) 9, Concordia (Mich.) 8, Union (Ky.) 6, Taylor (Ind.) 4, Bushnell (Ore.) 4, Antelope Valley (Calif.) 3, Cumberlands (Ky.) 3