Men's Basketball Picked Third in Preseason Poll

ANDERSON, S.C. -- The Anderson men's basketball team was picked third by the coaches in the Conference Carolinas preseason poll, released Wednesday by the conference office. Barton College, the reigning conference regular-season and tournament champion, was the choice to repeat as the regular-season champion, while Mount Olive garnered three first-place votes to fall in the second slot, with the Trojans picking up one first-place tally along with Pfeiffer. Pfeiffer, Belmont Abbey, Erskine, Queens, Limestone, Coker, Lees-McRae, and St. Andrews respectively, were selected to finish in that order. “The preseason polls are based on last year’s results,” Anderson head coach Jason Taylor said. “They give recognition to the effort and improvements over the previous seasons.” Barton returns 15 players from last year's 25-7 (17-3 conference) squad that shared the Conference Carolinas regular-season championship and won the tournament title. Leading the Bulldogs this season will be 6-3 senior forward L.J. Dunn, a returning first-team All-Conference Carolinas choice. Dunn, an All-America candidate who made the All-Southeast Region team, averaged 14.6 points and 9.2 rebounds last season while shooting 61.4 percent from the floor. Junior guard Greg Mammel is the other returning starter. He averaged 7.3 points, three assists and 1.2 steals per game. Mount Olive returns three All-Conference players from last year’s regular-season conference co-champions, including preseason second-team All-American and 2008-09 Conference Carolinas Player of the Year Kendrick Easley. Mount Olive finished 18-10 last year and won a share of its second consecutive regular-season Conference Carolinas title with a 17-3 mark. Easley ranked nationally and led the conference in scoring with a 21.2 point per game average. Junior forward Craig Hayes and senior guard/forward Mike Holloman both earned All-Conference Carolinas honorable mention last year. The Trojans return 10 players, including four starters and its top four scorers from a 15-win team (15-14 overall, 12-8 league record) and a fifth-place finish in Conference Carolinas. Last year's team boasted an explosive offense, ranking third in the conference and 33rd in the country, scoring an average of 80.8 points per game. Guard Brandon Young and forward Stephen Cobb lead the group of returnees. Young, who is poised to join the 1,000-point club this season, was an All-Conference performer last season after averaging 16.8 points per game. Cobb averaged 12.7 points per contest and shot 43.8 percent from the field last year as a sophomore and was named to the Conference Carolinas All-Tournament team. The Trojans return 85 percent of their potent scoring offense from last season and bolstered by two newcomers, Tony Anderson and Oskars Ernsteins, look to be contenders this season. Men's Basketball Preseason Poll (# of First place votes in parenthesis) 1. Barton College (6) 94 2. Mount Olive College (3) 91 3. Anderson University (1) 82 4. Pfeiffer University (1) 74 5. Belmont Abbey College 61 6. Erskine College 56 7. Queens University of Charlotte 41 8. Limestone College 40 9. Coker College 36 T-10. Lees-McRae College 15 T-10. St. Andrews Presbyterian College 15
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