CHARLOTTE, N.C. --- After extending their winning streak to seven games with a pair of victories last week, the Tusculum University women's basketball team has jumped into a tie for fourth in this week's D2SIDA Southeast Region rankings, through games of Jan. 13.
The Pioneers defeated Mars Hill 79-46 last Wednesday and beat Coker 71-57 last Saturday to improve to 11-2 overall and 4-2 in the South Atlantic Conference. Tusculum climbed from seventh to fourth in the rankings, tied with Carson-Newman (12-4) which lost to Anderson and beat Queens in last week's action.
Anderson (14-2) stays atop the rankings following wins over Carson-Newman and Newberry, with North Georgia (10-2) and Newberry (11-2) maintaining second and third, respectively. Wingate (10-4) dropped one spot to sixth, followed by Barton (13-3), Lander (9-5), Columbus State (7-4) and poll newcomer Belmont Abbey (11-5).
Tusculum begins the week ranked first in Division II in three-point field goal percentage defense at 21.1 percent, third in turnover margin at plus-10.62 per game, third in steals per game at 15.0 per game, and third in turnovers forced at 25.77 per game. Individually, junior guard Mia Long leads Division II and ranks fifth across all three divisions of the NCAA in steals per game at 4.54 per contest.
Both games for Tusculum this week are against teams ranked in the Southeast Region poll. The Pioneers host Carson-Newman on Wednesday at 6 p.m. at Pioneer Arena, then travel to Wingate on Saturday for a 2 p.m. start.