ATLANTA — Spring Hill’s Tiffany Valentine was selected as the 2018 Southern Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (SIAC) Women’s Basketball Preseason Player of the Year, and Taylor Terry of Miles garnished the Preseason Defensive Player of the Year, announced by the league office.
The preseason honors and predicted order of finish are voted on by the league’s head coaches and sports information directors.
After having sat out during her true sophomore season, Valentine returned and collected 2017-18 SIAC Player of the Year and Spring Hill’s Female Athlete of the Year honors. She was also a member of the 2017-18 SIAC Women’s Basketball All-Conference Team.
Valentine led Spring Hill to a 15-3 conference record and a first-place regular season finish in the west division which is the school’s best record in almost two decades. After starting all 28 games her redshirt sophomore season, the 6-foot-1 forward averaged 37.6 minutes and scored a team-high 17.5 points per game.
Valentine shot 53.1 percent (182-343) from the field and was top three in the league in scoring and field goal percentage while finishing at No. 4 in defensive rebounds averaging 5.3 rebounds per game. The Houston, Texas native tallied 199 rebounds with 31 assists, 14 blocked shots and 12 steals during her 2017-18 campaign and is looking to improve and lead the Badgers this season.
Entering her third and final season with the Golden Bears, Terry has been named the 2018-19 SIAC Preseason Defensive Player of the Year. During her junior campaign, Terry averaged 8.5 points and 6.0 rebounds per game. The Atlanta, Georgia native led the Golden Bears to in blocked shots as she posted 46 last season and was ranked second in the league for blocked shots averaging 1.6 per game.
Joining Valentine and Terry on the 2018 SIAC Women’s Basketball Preseason Team are Dana Gettis (LeMoyne-Owen), Brooke Spaulding (Central State), Jaeda Davis (Central State), Alicia Franklin (Fort Valley State), Elise Rielly (Spring Hill), Ay’Anna Bey (Benedict), Keondra Archie (Paine) who were also named to the 2017-18 SIAC Women’s Basketball All-Conference Team. New additions include Jade Wilson of Tuskegee and Takyra Gilbert of Central State.
In the eastern division, Clark Atlanta was voted to finish on top as they garnered eight first-place votes. Albany State finished second in the poll with three first-place votes above Benedict who was voted third with one first-place vote. Also, with one first-place vote, Fort Valley State was voted fourth ahead of Paine who rounded out the eastern division.
Central State was voted to lead the western division as they collected seven first-place votes followed by Spring Hill who was picked to finish second with six first-place votes. With one first-place vote, Kentucky State finished third above LeMoyne-Owen who is expected to finish fourth. Miles was chosen to finish fifth in the poll as Lane and Tuskegee rounded out the western division and were voted to finish sixth and seventh respectively.
|Tiffany Valentine*||F||Spring Hill||R-Junior|
|Brooke Spaulding*||PG||Central State||Sophomore|
|Jaeda Davis*||G||Central State||Senior|
|Alicia Franklin*||PG/G||Fort Valley State||Junior|
|Elise Rielly*||G||Spring Hill||Junior|
|Takyra Gilbert||PG||Central State||Junior|
*Indicates returner for 2017-18 SIAC All-Conference Team
2018 SIAC Women’s Basketball Preseason Honors
Preseason Player of the Year: Tiffany Valentine, Spring Hill
Preseason Defensive Player of the Year: Taylor Terry, Miles
Predicted Order of Finish:
(first-place votes in parenthesis)
- Clark Atlanta (8)
- Albany State (3)
- Benedict (1)
- Fort Valley State (1)
- Central State (7)
- Spring Hill (6)
- Kentucky State (1)