Athletics News

Women's Basketball

Skipjacks return to national hoop rankings
Chesapeake College at No. 19 in NJCAA Division II women’s poll

They’re back!

Chesapeake College’s women’s basketball team moved back into the NJCAA Division II national rankings on the strength of 11 straight victories and its first Maryland Junior College Athletic Conference tournament championship.

The Skipjacks (22-3) are No. 19 in the latest Top 20 poll, which was released Wednesday. Chesapeake briefly appeared in the national rankings last month – ironically, also at No. 19 – but consecutive losses to Allegany College of Maryland and Montgomery College Rockville knocked the Skipjacks out of the rankings.

And they haven’t lost since.

"It’s a great accomplishment, not only for the team but also for the college," said Chesapeake head coach Damon Nichols. "We’ve worked hard, and hard work pays off."

Jackson (Mich.) Community College and Pima (Ariz.) Community College – ranked 14th and 19th, respectively, a week earlier – each lost twice to drop out of the national rankings and make room for the Skipjacks. State rival Allegany was among other colleges receiving votes which did not crack the Top 20.

Nichols said he was "hoping we could get in the rankings" in light of the team’s inspired play. He said he’d like his team to take the momentum of the state-title run and national ranking and "carry it on into the region."

Chesapeake will participate in the NJCAA Division II Region XX tournament March 9-11 at Cecil College. The Skipjacks close their regular season on March 1st with a 6 p.m. home game against region rival Potomac State College of West Virginia University (12-8).

Johnson (Kan.) County Community College remained at the top of the Division II national rankings. The Cavaliers (25-1) finished fifth in the 2011 NJCAA Division II national tournament.

Montgomery College Rockville, the Maryland Junior College Athletic Conference regular-season champion, dropped from fifth to sixth in the NJCAA Division III national poll after its state tournament semifinal loss to Allegany. The Knights are 23-5.

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