The first month of the 2019-20 DII women's basketball season is coming to a close. Lubbock Christian and Drury are looking very much like the two powerhouses that stormed their way to the semifinals last season.
That's why the two come in atop the first DII women's basketball Power 10 of the season. Each week, I'll rank the top 10 teams. Keep in mind a few things, however. These are my rankings, and mine alone. I used a set of criteria that include — but is not limited to — toughest schedules, wins against ranked opponents and average margin of victory.
PRESEASON RANKINGS: How our top 25 looked in October
It is still very early in the season, so don't expect these rankings to stay the same for long. Check back every week to see how the Power 10 unfolds.
DII women's basketball Power 10: Nov. 25
(Note: All records and stats through games played Sunday, Nov. 24.)
No. 1 Lubbock Christian | 5-0
I had Drury atop the rankings entering the season, so this is already the first change in the top 10. The two are so close right now that it came down to the narrowest margin. The way Lubbock Christian put up a 24-9 fourth quarter against nationally-ranked Southwestern Oklahoma State to seal the big victory gave the Lady Chaparrals the slight edge in the early going.
PLAYER OF THE YEAR WATCHLIST: Keep an eye on these 21 players
No. 2 Drury | 4-0
Like I said, you can look at Drury as more of a 1B, than a No. 2. The Panthers downed then-ranked West Texas A&M on opening weekend and have been rolling since, winning games by an average of 20 points a night. Keep an eye this weekend on the Thanksgiving Classic at Drury. If we see a commanding win over a very good Central Missouri team, the Panthers can be back to No. 1 next week.
No. 3 Azusa Pacific | 4-0
The Cougars are cruising so far. They are perfect through four games and were able to hold off Western Washington in a tight one like contenders should. This team is deep, with seven players contributing at least six points a night.
No. 4 Grand Valley State | 5-0
The Lakers aren't just winning, they are steamrolling teams by an average of 33.4 points per night. Cassidy Boensch leads a stacked starting five in which four players average at least six points and four rebounds per night.
No. 5 Fort Hays State | 4-0
Belle Barbieri is off to a hot start and so are the Tigers. She's averaging a double-double with 12.8 points and 12.5 rebounds per night. The first big test is not far down the road with a date with Saint Anselm on Dec. 19 in the Cruzin Classic.
No. 6 California (Pa) | 7-0
The seven wins are impressive enough this early in the season. When you add that one came against a then-top 10 Virginia Union, it's even more impressive. The Vulcans have plenty of weapons that can hurt you as well, with five players averaging 10 or more points per night.
DII BASKETBALL SHOWCASE: The complete schedule and how to watch
No. 7 Lee | 6-0
The Flames are hot, that's for sure. The reigning Gulf South Conference champions have had little trouble with the schedule so far, and that includes a double-digit victory over a Florida Southern team receiving votes. Circle your calendars for Dec. 11. The matchup with Lander should be a good one.
No. 8 Saint Anselm | 4-0
Here's a scary thought. Shannon Ryan is off to a career-best start. The Hawks electric scorer has broken the 30-point barrier twice in four games. If she's playing at a higher level than ever before, the Hawks are dangerous.
No. 9 North Georgia | 6-0
The Nighthawks actually jumped Ashland into this spot Saturday night with a big win over then-No. 20 Carson-Newman. This team can put up points but showed it can hang in a tightly-contested battle against ranked competition and come out ahead.
No. 10 Ashland | 4-0
The Eagles haven't played the stiffest competition just yet, but they are winning games by 30.5 points per night by scoring 101 points per game. Sara Loomis is leading the charge averaging a double-double per night.
TOURNAMENT PREP: How the DII women's basketball championship works
Just missed (in alphabetical order):
- Alaska Anchorage
- Anderson (SC)
- MSU Moorhead
- UC San Diego
- Virginia Union