COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. – After finishing with the best winning percentage in program history in 2012-13, the University of Colorado Colorado Springs was picked to win its first RMAC women’s basketball championship in the 2013-14 Preseason Coaches’ Polls released this morning. Junior guard Abby Kirchoff was named the Preseason Player of the Year.
The Mountain Lions received two first-place votes and earned 32 points from the conference coaches, who were not allowed to vote for their own team. Colorado Mesa, last year’s conference champions, earned 34 points as the runner-up in the preseason poll.
UCCS finished last season with a 19-8 overall record and 16-6 in the RMAC for third in the regular season standings. The Mountain Lions hosted their second postseason game in program history last March and led the conference in free throw percentage, three-point percentage, assists and defensive rebounds.
Kirchoff is making her second straight appearance on the RMAC All-Preseason Team. She was a member of the RMAC First Team last season and was on the conference second team as a freshman in 2012. Kirchoff averaged 14 points and 41 percent from the three-point line last season and ranked in the top five of the conference in three-point percentage, free-throw percentage and steals. She finished the season ranked No. 22 in Division II for field goal percentage.
UCCS lost one senior to graduation and will return all five starters. The Mountain Lions put together a program-record eight-game winning streak and received recognition in national polls for the first time in program history in 2012-13.
The Mountain Lions will open the 2013-14 season with an exhibition contest at Colorado State on Nov. 8 at 8 p.m. The regular season will begin the following weekend on Nov. 15 with a 7:30 p.m., home game with Bemidji State.