No. 6 NAIA ranking is historic for Warriors


For the first time in its history, Westmont’s women’s basketball team has been ranked nationally with a single digit. The Warriors, who are 8-1 overall and 2-0 in Golden State Athletic Conference play, are ranked at number six in the NAIA Division I Women’s Basketball Coaches’ Top 25 Poll released yesterday.

The poll is the first regular season poll of the year. Westmont moved up fourteen places from the preseason poll in which the Warriors were ranked at number 20.

The Warriors have piled up some impressive victories in the early season. The first weekend of November, Westmont defeated Westminster of Utah (ranked at number nine at the time) on their home court and #24 Rocky Mountain (Mont). In mid-November, the Warriors posted a 76-71 home victory over #19 Lubbock Christian (Texas).

At the end of the month, Westmont came from behind to defeat #3 Azusa Pacific 68-64 in the first conference game of the season. The Cougars are the defending NAIA national champions and were the top-ranked team in the NAIA at the time of Westmont’s victory.

Westmont’s only loss came against #16 Southern Nazarene (Okla.) on the Friday after Thanksgiving. Playing at The Master’s College in Santa Clarita, the Warriors fell 58-54 on the neutral floor.

The previous highest ranking in program history was in the January 12, 2009 poll when the Warriors were listed at number ten. Last season, the Warriors were ranked between 21 and 24 for most of the season.

The Warriors play two non-conference games this week. Tonight, Westmont travels to Los Angeles to take on Occidental College (3-1). Then on Saturday, Westmont will host California Lutheran in a 5:30 p.m. game.