The Mount Vernon Nazarene College women's basketball team is off to one of the best starts in the program's history, and the Lady Cougars were recognized for this accomplishment when the first regular-season NAIA Division II poll was released on Tuesday.
MVNC, which has opened the season with six straight victories, made its first-ever appearance in the weekly poll at #20. The Lady Cougars are off to their best start since the 1985-1986 team began the year 7-0.
The team began the season with back-to-back home non-conference victories over Ohio State University-Newark (84-50) and Kentucky Christian College (65-44). Then, MVNC won both of its games at the NCCAA East Region Classic by defeating Roberts Wesleyan (N.Y.) College 74-61 and downing Nyack (N.Y.) College 67-52. After a 93-50 non-conference win over Ursuline College at home, the Lady Cougars posted their biggest win so far with an 84-76 American Mideast Conference victory at tenth-ranked University of Rio Grande.
MVNC is led by 6-foot-2 senior center LeAnn Mallernee. The transfer from Capital University is among the AMC leaders in scoring (18.0 points per game), rebounding (9.3 boards per game), field goal percentage (56.3 percent), and blocked shots (7).
Sophomore point guard Jenni Davis is averaging 13.2 points per game while knocking down 11 three-pointers. She is among the conference leaders in assists (32) and steals (17). Meanwhile, junior guard/forward Angie Trainer averages 12.8 points and 6.2 rebounds per game.
The Lady Cougars will return to action on Saturday when MVNC will host Wilberforce University in another conference contest. Tip-off is slated for 2:00 p.m.