HOUGHTON, Mich. (WLUC) – The Michigan Tech women's basketball team is gearing up for the start of the 2019-20 season, which is just around the corner. The Huskies are coming off another outstanding season in 2018-19 in Head Coach Sam Hoyt's first campaign at Tech. The Huskies were picked to win the Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference North Division and senior forward Abbie Botz along with junior guard Cassidy Trotter were named to the Preseason All-GLIAC North Division team.
Hoyt guided the Huskies to a 21-9 overall record and a 16-4 mark in the Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference a year ago. The Huskies claimed their 16th GLIAC North Division/Conference title last season and were the No. 3 seed in the conference tournament.
Michigan Tech was selected to finish first in the GLIAC North Division this year when the coaches' preseason poll was announced Thursday by the conference office. Tech earned 58 points in the poll along with eight first place votes, edging out Northern Michigan who was picked second with 53 points and four first place votes.
Ferris State checked in at the No. 3 spot in the North Division with 40 points followed by Parkside with 32 points (No. 4), Lake Superior State had 19 points (No. 5), and Purdue Northwest was issued 14 points (No. 6).
Over in the South Division, Grand Valley State holds the No. 1 spot with 61 points and 11 first place votes followed by Ashland University with 51 points and one first place vote. Northwood checks in at No. 3 with 38 points, Wayne State is fourth with 30 points, Davenport lands in the No. 5 spot with 20 points, and Saginaw Valley State is sixth with 16 points.
The Huskies return three GLIAC All-Conference players from a year ago. Botz, a forward from Little Chute, Wisconsin, led the Huskies in both scoring and rebounding during the 2018-19 campaign. Botz averaged 11.1 points and 8.2 rebounds per game in 30 contests leading to First Team All-Conference honors.
Trotter, who hails from Beaver Dam, Wisconsin, was named Second Team All-GLIAC, GLIAC All-Defensive Team and to the GLIAC All-Tournament Team in 2018-19. Trotter played in all 30 contests a year ago with 29 starts and ranked second on the team in scoring at 10.6 points per game. She paced the Huskies in steals per game (2.6) and in assists per game with 3.6.
Ellie Mackay, a guard from Novi, Michigan, made a major impact for the Huskies in her first collegiate season a year ago. She averaged 9.8 points per game and appeared in all 30 contests with 20 starts. Mackay connected on 41.7 percent of her three-point field goals while averaging 2.9 rebounds and 1.7 assists per game. Mackay was the GLIAC Freshman of the Year following the 2018-19 season.
Sloane Zenner, Clara Johnson, Hannah Hobson, Alex Rondorf, Jordan Ludescher, Baillie McGirk, Ellie Welsh, and Michelle LaFave are key returner's and leaders on this year's team as well. In addition, the Huskies will have some new faces on the team this season with five incoming freshman who will look to battle for playing time. Claire Barghahn (White Lake, Mich.), Abby Bretzke (Beulah, Mich.), Sara Dax (Kewaunee, Wis.), Katelyn Meister (Wisconsin Dells, Wis.), and Kylie Mogen (Menomonie, Wis.) are all a part of the 2019-20 incoming class.
The Huskies tip-off the season Thursday at 8 p.m. eastern time on the road in an exhibition game at NCAA Division I Wisconsin-Green Bay followed by a second exhibition contest at home versus Finlandia University on Friday Nov. 1 at 6 p.m. The regular season opener is at Lewis on Saturday November 9th at 4 p.m. This year's slate of games will include 13 regular season home dates, with the official home opener scheduled for Friday November 22nd against Concordia-St. Paul.