The 2019-20 women's basketball season has kicked off and it's time for the Pacific Coast Athletic Conference sports information directors to weigh in with predictions. The conference SID's pick Palomar College to win the PCAC for 2019-20.
Palomar College last won a PCAC title in 2016-17 as a part of the PCAC North Division. With the conference going back to one division, the Comets received 3-of-5 first place votes and 32 of a possible 35 points in becoming the favorites. MiraCosta College narrowly edged Southwestern College for second place in the voting while Grossmont College was picked fourth.
Palomar returns three players that were named first team all-conference last season and one more that was named to the second team. Julie Saelee, Taylor Williams, Imari Cooley and Dee Dee Valenzuela give the Comets a ton of returning firepower, accounting for over 37 points-per-game last season. Saelee led Palomar in scoring (11.4) while shooting a 32.6% from three-point range. Cooley finished second on the team with 7.7 rebounds-per-game. Palomar opened the season with a win over perennial power Los Angeles Trade Tech last weekend (65-63) and opened the Mt. San Jacinto Tournament on Thursday with a dominating win against Copper Mountain (99-34).
MiraCosta finished in third place in the PCAC North last season and was 17-9 overall, making it to the second round of the CCCAA Regional Tournament. The Spartans return three all-conference selections from a season ago in Julia Iman, Chynna Cochran and Savannah Beasley. The trio averaged over 36 points-per-game last season as Cochran led the team in scoring (15.1) while Beasley led the team in rebounding (5.8). MiraCosta had a solid start to the season last weekend, beating both Cerritos (68-50) and Victor Valley (67-64).
Southwestern was part of a three-way tie in the PCAC South Division a season ago, finishing 15-11 overall. The Jaguars lost some talent to graduation but return all-conference selection Malia Talavera from a season ago. Talavera averaged 7.1 points-per-game, starting 20-of-23 games. She will be called upon to provide leadership to a squad that is freshman-heavy. Southwestern opens the season on November 15 at the Palomar Tournament.
Grossmont was picked to finish fourth by the conference SID's after finishing 7-17 overall last season and part of the three-way for the North Division lead. The Griffins have just one returning player from a season ago in Leslie Black, who started 19 games. The Griffins do have a batch of solid freshman this season, led by Leanna Watson. Grossmont has gotten off to a rough start to the season so far in dropping three straight, playing a rugged schedule that includes Fullerton, Irvine Valley and Moorpark.
SPORTS INFORMATION PRESEASON SID's POLL
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