Fort Wayne women’s basketball picked last in Summit League poll

Niecee Nelson

ELMHURST, Ill. – South Dakota State, the reigning tournament champion, was selected as the favorite to capture the 2016-17 Summit League Women’s Basketball Championship according to the annual preseason poll of league coaches, SIDs and media. The Jackrabbits collected 30-of-34 first place votes and totaled 542 points in the polling.


IUPUI was second with 438 points while two-time defending regular season champion South Dakota edged out Oral Roberts for third place with 393 points and three first-place votes. The Golden Eagles accumulated 391 points and the final first-place tally.


South Dakota State junior guard Macy Miller was tabbed as The Summit League’s Preseason Player of the Year. Last season’s Tournament MVP and a first team all-league selection, Miller averaged 15.5 points, 4.7 rebounds and 2.7 assists per contest a year ago.


The IUPUI duo of Danielle Lawrence and Mikale Rogers (2015 Sixth Woman of the Year), both first team all-leaguers last season, were picked to the preseason first team, along with Omaha’s Mikaela Shaw. Other preseason first team selections were the South Dakota State tandem of Clarissa Ober and Ellie Thompson, a second team honoree last season.


Additional preseason notes about Summit League Women’s Basketball …


  • South Dakota State is favored to win the title for the fifth consecutive season and seventh time in the last nine years.
  • Since 1996-97, the preseason favorite has won either the regular season or tournament title in all but four years and has won both only three times.
  • The Preseason Player of the Year has gone on to capture Player of the Year honors 10 times in league history, including five of the last six years.
  • South Dakota State has won either the regular season or tournament title each year since joining the league in 2007-08.
  • Four of the preseason first team selections (Danielle Lawrence, Macy Miller, Mikale Rogers, Mikaela Shaw) were first team all-league selections a year ago. Shaw was also named second team in 2015.
  • Preseason first teamer Ellie Thompson and second team honoree Kaylan Mayberrry were both named to the all-league second team last season.
  • Summit League teams were represented in all three national postseason tournaments (NCAA, WNIT, WBI) for the fourth-straight year. League teams are a combined 16-9 (.640) in those tournaments the last three years.
  • South Dakota captured the league’s first postseason tournament title in any sport after claiming the WNIT crown in 2016.
  • League teams earned at least one win in each of the three postseason tournaments for the first time ever – South Dakota State (NCAA), South Dakota (WNIT), Western Illinois (WBI).
  • The Summit League finished the season No. 16 in the RPI, tying for its highest all-time finishing. Two schools – South Dakota (No. 37) and South Dakota State (No. 44) – finished in the Top 50 for the first time in league history.
  • The 2016 Summit League Women’s Basketball Championship set single-session records in every round, quarterfinal (9,816), semifinal (7.237) and championship (8,647), and set a new mark for total attendance at 28,872.
  • The Summit League’s annual Media Day teleconference is Wednesday, Oct. 12
  • Regular season play commences Nov. 11 and the 16-game double round-robin league schedule begins Dec. 28
  • The 2017 Summit League Women’s Basketball Championship is March 4-7 at the Denny Sanford PREMIER Center in Sioux Falls, S.D.


Place Team Points (1st)
1. South Dakota State 542 (30)
2. IUPUI 438
3. South Dakota 393 (3)
4. Oral Roberts 391 (1)
5. Omaha 325
6. Western Illinois 250
7. North Dakota State 156
8. Denver 150
9. Fort Wayne 80


Preseason Player of the Year: Macy Miller, South Dakota State
First Team
Name School Pos. Year ’15-16 Stats (ppg / rpg / apg)
Danielle Lawrence IUPUI G Jr. 13.2 / 3.1 / 1.4
Macy Miller South Dakota State G Jr. 15.5 / 4.7 / 2.7
Clarissa Ober South Dakota State C Sr. 9.0 / 8.0 / 1.2 / 2.0 bpg
Mikale Rogers IUPUI C Sr. 12.5 / 7.2 / 1.0 / 1.6 bpg
Mikaela Shaw Omaha F Sr. 18.3 / 7.9 / 3.1
Ellie Thompson South Dakota State F Jr. 10.4 / 6.5 / 1.3
Second Team  
Name School Pos. Year ’15-16 Stats (ppg / rpg / apg)
Madison Guebert South Dakota State G So. 10.4 / 1.3 / 1.1
Faith Ihim Oral Roberts F Jr. 10.2 / 6.9 / 0.9
Kaylan Mayberry Oral Roberts G Sr. 11.5 / 2.8 / 2.0
Taylor Thunstedt North Dakota State G Jr. 17.0 / 3.2 / 3.1
Kerri Young South Dakota State G/F Sr. 10.5 / 4.9 / 2.5