Blog – MSU women finish season No. 18 in Coaches poll

MSU Media Relations

Mississippi State closed the 2014-15 season No. 18 in the final USA Today/WBCA Coaches poll that was released Wednesday.

SEC Coach of the Year Vic Schaefer’s Bulldogs claimed a 17th-straight week in the poll after finishing the year 27-7 overall and 11-5 in the SEC en route to advancing to the second round of the NCAA Tournament.

Mississippi State set school records for overall and league wins while matching the best SEC finish in program annals with a third-place showing.

The fantastic season earned the program its first NCAA Tournament appearance since 2010. Playing in Durham, N.C., in the Spokane Regional, MSU won its fifth-straight opening round game 57-47 against Tulane before falling to host Duke 64-56.

Despite slipping four places, MSU stayed in the Top 20 the final 15 weeks of the year. The Bulldogs climbed as high as No. 13 (Feb. 23 and March 1).

Behind Associated Press All-America Honorable Mention Victoria Vivians and Second Team All-SEC selection Martha Alwal, Mississippi State earned its highest finish in the final USA Today Coaches Poll since the 2002-03 squad closed the year at No. 16.

The Preseason WNIT champion Bulldogs opened the campaign with a school-best 18-straight wins en route to claiming back-to-back 20-win seasons for just the second time in program history.

State was the first NCAA Division I men’s or women’s team to record 22 victories and one of the final three unbeaten women’s teams in the nation.

The Bulldogs were one of four SEC teams in the final ranking, joining No. 3 South Carolina, No. 6 Tennessee and No. 16 Kentucky.

Fans can celebrate the historic season April 15 at the Hail State Hoops Awards Banquet.

The event, held in Mize Pavilion starting at 6 p.m., costs $25 per person, and fans are encouraged to RSVP by calling (662) 325-0198 or emailing dbrown@athletics.msstate.edu by April 13.

USA Today/WBCA Coaches Top 25 Poll – Final (April 8, 2015)

Rank      Team                             Record         Pts.           Pvs.

1             Connecticut (32)          38-1             800          1

2             Notre Dame                  36-3             768          2

3             South Carolina              34-3             726          4

4             Maryland                      34-3             714          3

5             Baylor                            33-4             641          6

6             Tennessee                     30-6             637          5

7             Florida St                       32-5             635          7

8             Arizona St                      29-6             533          9

9             North Carolina              26-9             516          12

10          Louisville                       27-7             504          8

11          Iowa                               26-8             388          15

12          Duke                              23-11          382          16

13          Oregon St                      27-5             371          10

14          Stanford                        26-10          346          17

15          Princeton                      31-1             334          13

16          Kentucky                       24-10          328          11

17          Dayton                           28-7             318          NR

18          Mississippi St             27-7             256          14

19          Gonzaga                         26-8             190          NR

20          Ohio State                     24-11          152          23

21          Florida Gulf Coast         31-3             147          21

22          Texas                             24-11          133          NR

23          Rutgers                          23-10          120          22

24          South Florida                27-8             83            25

25          George Washington     29-4             77            19

Dropped out: Chattanooga 18, Texas A&M 20, Seton Hall 24

Others receiving votes: Chattanooga 61, DePaul 52, Arkansas-Little Rock 51, Texas A&M 49, Seton Hall 20, Syracuse 17, UCLA 8, Iowa State 8, Oklahoma 7, West Virginia 7, California 6, James Madison 4, Western Kentucky 3, Green Bay 3, St. John’s 2, Miami (FL) 2, Tulane 1.

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