(Editor's note: Big Sky Conference media release)
FARMINGTON, Utah -- Three Big Sky women's basketball programs were honored by the Women’s Basketball Coaches Association (WBCA) for their success in the classroom with spots on the 2019-20 Academic Top 25 Team Honor Roll.
The WBCA Academic Top 25 recognizes teams throughout the entire NCAA. This season is the 25th year that the WBCA has compiled the honor roll.
To be eligible, teams must have a combined 3.0 GPA for the school year among all student-athletes that are part of the roster at the beginning of the second semester of the season.
Southern Utah was No. 5 on the honor roll after compiling a combined GPA of 3.742. The Thunderbirds wrapped up their second season under the direction of head coach Tracy Sanders. SUU finished the 2019-20 season as the sixth-best team in the conference with a final record of 18-12. The Thunderbirds also advanced to the quarterfinals of the Big Sky Tournament.
Tied at No. 20 on the list is Northern Arizona, who is under the direction of head coach Loree Payne and completed one of their most successful seasons in recent history. The Lumberjacks combined for a GPA of 3.646. NAU finished the 2019-20 season strong with a 16-15 overall record and a fifth seed in the Big Sky Tournament where they advanced to the semifinal game.
Montana was two spots behind the Lumberjacks at No. 22 on the honor roll. The Lady Griz also excelled on the court with a 17-13 overall record last season and earned the fourth seed in the conference tournament.
This is the seventh time in 25 years that NAU has received this honor and the third time for Montana. SUU received the award for the first time this season.