Notre Dame tops AP Top 25, S. Carolina drops from top 10
NEW YORK (AP) — South Carolina’s run in the top 10 is over.
The Gamecocks fell out of the first 10 teams in the AP women’s basketball poll on Monday after being ranked that high for the past 89 consecutive weeks dating back to Jan. 6, 2014. It was the third longest active streak behind UConn and Notre Dame.
“What we’ve been able to do — we had a roster full of talented players that grew, creating that buzz around here and around the country. I don’t think it’s our last stop — our last stop being in the top 10 probably this year,” coach Dawn Staley said after the team lost to Maryland on Sunday. “We are going to coach our kids up and try to get back in there. Not to say that’s what we’re shooting for. But we are going to get better. We’re going to get more disciplined. We are going to give people a much better game than we gave Maryland tonight.”
South Carolina was ranked 13th on Monday by the 31-member national media panel after losing to then-No. 9 Maryland on Sunday by 24 points. The Terrapins moved up two spots to No. 7.
The top six teams remained unchanged with Notre Dame a unanimous No. 1 pick. The Irish were followed by UConn, Oregon, Baylor, Louisville and Mississippi State.
Stanford, Oregon State and Texas round out the first 10 teams in the poll.
West Virginia entered at No. 25 as Georgia fell out after dropping games to UCLA and Georgia Tech.
RISING HAWKEYES: Iowa moved up to 12th in the poll this week, its best ranking since being 11th on Nov. 17, 1997. The Hawkeyes face West Virginia in the Junkanoo Jam on Friday night.
THANSKGIVING FEAST: There are a number of holiday tournaments this week, none have a better slate of teams then the new one in Vancouver. Notre Dame, Oregon State and South Carolina are all playing in Canada this week in an eight-team field. The Gamecocks and Beavers could square off in the second round with Notre Dame potentially waiting in the final for the winner of that game.
“This is an incredible field in which to christen college basketball to Vancouver, and without question, the best early season tournament in the sport,” said ESPN analyst Debbie Antonelli, who is also the women’s tournament director. “It features three teams that finished in the NCAA Tournament Elite Eight with Notre Dame, South Carolina and Oregon State, and three other teams that won their respective conference tournaments — Western Kentucky, Drake and Gonzaga. It will strongly resemble an NCAA Tournament regional weekend in Vancouver.”
Asssociated Press writer Jeffrey Collins contributed to this story from Columbia, South Carolina.
Follow Doug on Twitter at http://www.twitter.com/dougfeinberg