NORFOLK, Va. Hampton senior Malia Tate-DeFreitas was named Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference (MEAC) Women’s Basketball Preseason Player of the Year, the conference announced today. North Carolina A&T State was picked to win the regular season title.

The preseason poll and all-conference teams are selected by the conference’s head women’s basketball coaches and sports information directors.

Tate-DeFreitas led the conference in scoring last season, averaging 21.4 points for the Lady Pirates. She ranked seventh nationally in field-goal attempts and 16th in points per game. Tate-DeFreitas recorded five 30-point games and notched a triple-double of 13 points, 11 rebounds and 11 assists against Bethune-Cookman last year. She was also named the 2016 MEAC Player of the Year and BoxToRow’s Player of the Year. [easyazon_infoblock align=”right” cart=”y” identifier=”B011DSRNB6″ locale=”US” tag=”hbcusports-20″]

North Carolina A&T State tallied 13 first-place votes and 317 points to earn the top spot. Last season, the Aggies earned a share of the MEAC regular season title with a 12-4 mark and an 19-12 overall record. Also, N.C. A&T State won the MEAC Women’s Basketball Tournament championship with a win over Coppin State. The Aggies open the season on November 11 in Statesboro, Ga. against Georgia Southern.

Bethune-Cookman, the 2016 regular season co-champion, was picked to finish second with 292 points and five first-place votes. The Lady Wildcats recorded an 18-13 overall record and a 12-4 mark in MEAC play.

Hampton (297) received four first-place votes and was predicted to finish third, while Maryland Eastern Shore (216) garnered two first-place votes and Morgan State (201) rounded out the top five preseason predictions.

Florida A&M was chosen to finish sixth, followed by Coppin State  (7th), Savannah State (8th), Howard (9th), South Carolina State (10th), Delaware State (11th), Norfolk State (12th) and North Carolina Central (13th).

Joining Tate-DeFreitas on the Preseason All-MEAC First Team is Bethune-Cookman’s Kendra Cooper and Kailyn Williams, Maryland Eastern Shore’s Moengaroa Subritzky and Delaware State’s NaJai Pollard.

The 2016-17 MEAC women’s basketball season tips off on Friday, Nov. 11 with 12 MEAC teams in action.

The 2017 MEAC Basketball Tournament is scheduled for March 6-11 at the Norfolk Scope Arena in Norfolk, Va.

2016-17 MEAC Women’s Basketball Preseason Predicted Order of Finish
As voted on by the MEAC’s head women’s basketball coaches and sports information directors.
(First place votes in parenthesis)
Team Points
1. North Carolina A&T State (13) 317
2. Bethune-Cookman (5) 305
3. Hampton (4) 297
4. Maryland Eastern Shore (2) 216
5. Morgan State 201
6. Florida A&M 174
7. Coppin State 171
8. Savannah State (2) 151
9. Howard 141
10. South Carolina State 131
11. Delaware State 124
12. Norfolk State 92
13. North Carolina Central 46
2016-17 MEAC Women’s Basketball Preseason All-MEAC Teams
As voted on by the MEAC’s head women’s basketball coaches and sports information directors.
Preseason Player of the Year: Malia Tate-DeFreitas, Hampton

First Team

Name Pos. Cl. School Hometown
Malia Tate-DeFreitas G Sr. Hampton Harrisburg, Pa.
Kendra Cooper G Sr. Bethune-Cookman Spring, Texas
Moengaroa Subritzky G/F r-Jr. Maryland Eastern Shore Auckland, New Zealand
NaJai Pollard F So. Delaware State Richmond, Va.
Kailyn Williams C Sr. Bethune-Cookman New Orleans, La.


Second Team

Name Pos. Cl. School Hometown
Dana Brown G r-Sr. North Carolina A&T State Willow Springs, N.C.
Braennan Farrar G Jr. Morgan State St. Louis, Mo.
Kenyata Hendrix G/F Sr. Savannah State Carrollton, Ga.
Kayla Roberts F Jr. Norfolk State Miami, Fla.
Kaylah Lupoe C Jr. Hampton Phoenix, Ariz.


Third Team

Name Pos. Cl. School Hometown
Keena Samuels G Sr. Coppin State Upper Marlboro, Md.
K’Lynn Willis G So. Hampton Detroit, Mich.
Sydni Johnson G/F Sr. Howard Homewood, Ill.
Taylor Houston F Sr. Bethune-Cookman Raleigh, N.C.
Tiyonda Davis C Sr. Savannah State Athens, Ga.

Courtesy: MEAC


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