NEWBERRY — The Newberry College men’s basketball team has been picked fifth in the annual South Atlantic Conference Coaches’ Poll, the league office announced Tuesday.
Newberry is tied with Catawba for the fifth spot in the preseason poll with 93 points, just behind Wingate in fourth with 97 points. Lincoln Memorial is picked first in the conference with 128 points, with Carson-Newman in second at 115 at Queens in third at 113.
The Wolves went 20-10 last year and advanced to the SAC Tournament semifinals. Head coach Dave Davis and the Wolves’ high-octane offense will have to make up for the departure of stars Dondray Walker and Demarkus Smith to graduation.
Senior leadership will be key this season as James Ashby, Xavier Holmes, Mitch Riggs and Brandon Taylor will be familiar faces to Newberry fans.
Riggs averaged 12.8 points, 3.6 rebounds and 2.8 assists per game as a junior and is the team’s leading returning scorer. Holmes scored 10.1 points per game and averaged 3.5 rebounds and 1.0 assist per game.
Taylor averaged 10.0 points, 4.9 rebounds and 1.5 assists per game. Ashby scored 6.5 points per game with 3.0 rebounds and 0.9 assists per contest.
The Wolves kick off the season in the Red Myers Little Four Classic at Erskine on November 13-14 against Erskine and North Greenville. That will be followed by an exhibition contest at Marshall on November 15.
The home schedule kicks off with the Newberry Invitational on November 21-22. The Wolves will welcome Lees-McRae, Allen and Washington Adventist to Eleazer Arena that weekend.
This release was provided by Newberry College.