ST. LOUIS – The Eureka women's basketball team has been selected fifth in the St. Louis Intercollegiate Athletic Conference preseason poll.
The Red Devils received 28 points in the poll, which was conducted by league coaches, the SLIAC announced Tuesday morning.
Defending SLIAC Tournament champion Westminster topped the field with 47 points and five of eight first-place votes. Webster wasn't far behind with 45 and three first-place votes.
Greenville was third with 32 points and Spalding was one point ahead of the Red Devils with 29.
Fontbonne (21), Principia (14) and Blackburn (8) rounded out the list.
This will be the Red Devils' second season with head coach Jaylynn Stewart at the helm of the program.
In last spring's abbreviated COVID-19 season, Eureka went 7-8 and 5-5 in SLIAC play. The team earned its first SLIAC Tournament win since 2017 and its eighth semifinal berth of the past 10 seasons before falling one win shy of competing for a SLIAC Tournament title.
The Red Devils will return most of the key contributors from last year's team, including Second Team All-SLIAC honoree Abby Stotler (Wyoming, Ill./Stark County), Third Team All-SLIAC honoree Olivia Falls (Bloomington, Ill./Bloomington), SLIAC All-Defensive selection Marissa Murphy (Canton, Ill./Canton) and SLIAC Sixth Woman of the Year Shakaya Rogers (Hanover, Mich./Concord).
Eureka will officially open the 2021-22 season at home against Lincoln Christian on Wednesday, Nov. 10 at 6 p.m. It will be the first Eureka women's basketball game at Christine Bonati Bollwinkle Arena and Convocation Center game that will be open to fans in 627 days.
This season at Christine Bonati Bollwinkle Arena and Convocation Center, there won't be any capacity limits, but all spectators must wear masks regardless of vaccination status, in accordance with state, conference and institutional policy. Social distancing is strongly encouraged.