FHSU women’s basketball No. 10 in first set of NCAA Central Region Rankings

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Fort Hays State Women’s Basketball is slated 10th in the first release of the NCAA Central Region Rankings, announced Wednesday (Feb. 19).  Eight teams are selected to play in the Central Regional of the NCAA Tournament at the end of the season, but automatic bids are given to teams that win conference postseason tournaments.

The Tigers (16-6, 9-6 MIAA) are tied for fifth in overall losses (six) with MIAA foes Pittsburg State and Missouri Southern, trailing Minnesota State-Mankato and Northern State of the Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference by just one loss.  Though the TIgers have 16 overall wins, just 13 of those are listed as In-Region and Division II matchups.

Emporia State and Harding are ranked first and second in the region, followed by Central Missouri, Wayne State (Neb.) and MSU to round out the top five.  The Tigers split against ESU this season, knocking off the Lady Hornets in Hays, Kan., but falling in a close game in Emporia, Kan.

Eight teams will be selected to the NCAA Tournament from the region, but three automatic bids will be at stake from the MIAA, NSIC, and GAC. Teams outside the top 10 of the region rankings could steal a bid to the tournament by winning their conference tournament.

FHSU plays its final road game of the regular season on Feb. 19 (Wednesday) against Washburn in Topeka, Kan.  Game time is slated for 5:30 p.m.

Below is the first set of rankings for the 2014 season. A new set of rankings will be released next Wednesday (Feb. 26).

Rank Team In-Region Record Division II Record
1 Emporia State 18-2 20-2
2 Harding 20-1 22-1
3 Central Missouri 17-3 19-3
4 Wayne State (Neb.) 21-3 22-3
5 Minnesota State-Mankato 16-5 18-5
6 Pittsburg State 17-4 18-6
7 Northern State 17-5 17-5
8 Concordia-St. Paul 17-8 18-8
9 Missouri Southern State 13-6 13-6
10 Fort Hays State 13-6 13-6