Miami Hurricanes Women Ranked 14th in Nation

With ten players returning from the 2015-16 roster, the Miami Hurricanes women’s basketball team is ranked 14th in the country in the AP Poll a d20th in the USA Today Coach’s Poll to begin the 2016-17 season.

The Hurricanes finished 24-9, 10-6 and fifth in the ACC last season Miami advanced to the ACC tournament semifinals a season ago with wins over Pittsburgh in the second round and a 74-56 upset of number 10/14 Florida State in the quarterfinals.

Chicago area native Katie Meier is entering her 12th season as the Women’s Head Coach in Coral Gables. Meier is 283-188 in her career with a 207-143 record at Miami. Last season was the Hurricanes seventh season with a winning record and a postseason berth.

This season could bring a lot of pressure, as Meier has yet to coach the Hurricanes past the second round, something her Men’s counterpart Jim Larranaga has accomplished twice in the last four seasons.

The win over the Seminoles came after the losses to their in-state rivals in both regular season games. Miami was eliminated by Notre Dame 78-67 in the ACC Semifinals. The ‘Canes regular season earned them the fifth seed in the Lexington Region. Miami was upset by 12th seeded South Dakota State 74-71 in the first round.

The only player lost off from last season’s roster was guard Michelle Woods. Woods started every game last season and averaged 6.5 points per game, 3.6 rebounds, 3.06 assists and 1.24 steals per game.

The Hurricanes return their four leading scorers and rebounders from last season. The returnees are lead by Senior Guard Adrienne Motley. Motley led Miami in scoring and steals last season. The Senior Guard averaged 15.7 PPG and had 53 steals.

Other key returnees are Guard Jessica Thomas, Forward Keyona Hayes and Dutch Center Emese Hof. Thomas was the U’s second-leading scorer last season, averaging 11.7 PPG and led the team with 120 assists. Motley and Hayes were the only Hurricanes to average in double figures a season ago.

Hayes was third on the team in scoring at 9.1 PPG and just edged out Hof for the rebounding lead 183 to 180. Hof put up 8.6 PPG and led the team with 42 blocked shots.

The ‘Canes returning star power faces a tough schedule this upcoming season. Miami plays seven teams ranked in the top 25 with five games on the road against preseason ranked teams. The Hurricanes ranking is impressive in a stacked ACC. They are tied with 2016 National Runner-up and ACC rival Syracuse.

Five ACC teams are ranked in the Top 25 including Miami and Syracuse. Notre Dame is number one in the AP and Number Two in the USA Coaches Poll, Louisville is 5/8 and Florida State 12th in both polls.

Miami opens the season November 11 at Kentucky in the Kentucky Classic and will take on Albany two days later in Lexington.

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