South Georgia Technical College Lady Jets move up to 15th in NJCAA national poll
For the first time in five weeks, the South Georgia Technical College Lady Jets have been able to move up a spot in the National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA) women’s basketball national rankings. The Lady Jets are 25 – 2 overall and 15 – 0 in the Georgia Collegiate Athletic Association (GCAA) but have remained stuck in the 16th position in the national rankings for the past four weeks.
The Lady Jets were ranked 24th in the pre-season national poll, then moved up three spots into 21st place prior to the Thanksgiving break. They climbed to 19th place, and then moved up another two spots into 17th before climbing into the 16th position at the end of the year. They fell to 17th in the first poll of 2020 but climbed back into 16th place and have remained there for the past four weeks. This is the highest ranking the Lady Jets have been able to reach in the 2019 – 2020 poll standings.
South Plains, Texas; Trinity Valley, TX; and Western Nebraska, held on to the top three spots in the poll this week but Gulf Coast State, FL; dropped from 4th to 8th after a loss that put them at 18 – 4 overall. Shelton State was able to move up from fifth in the fourth place spot and Northwest Florida State went from seventh to fifth in the standings.
Hutchinson, KS: remained in the 6th place spot, Chipola, FL; moved up from ninth to seventh, Gulf Coast fell to 8th, then Jones, MS; and Tyler, TX; both were able to climb one position into ninth and 10th. Rounding out the top 15 spots in order are: Central Arizona, Florida SouthWestern State, New Mexico, Wabash Valley, IL; and South Georgia Technical College.
“I am glad that we were able to climb in the national standings,” said South Georgia Technical College Athletic Director and Lady Jets head coach James Frey. “But right now, we have to concentrate on winning the regular season GCAA title, the NJCAA Region XVII tournament and the District J championship to make sure we are able to return to the national tournament for the fourth consecutive year. We can’t stump our toe right now. We have to finish the drill to advance.”
Four Lady Jets are doing their part on the court to help keep their team in the national spotlight with their individual play on the court. Freshman center Femme Sikuzani from the Congo is currently listed as the sixth leading rebounder in the nation. She has a total of 308 rebounds this season in her 27 games.
Sikuzani from Goma, DRC, is ranked in six different categories. The 6’ 5” center is averaging a total of 11.4 rebounds per game which is currently 13th overall in the nation.
She is currently listed as 9th in the nation in offensive rebounds with an average of 5.1 per game and 30th in the nation in defensive rebounds with 6.3 per outing. And she is currently ranked 32nd overall in field goal percentage shooting with a 55.6 percent success rate on her shots. She also moved up to 41st place this week in blocks per game with a 1.6 average.
Three other members of the Lady Jets garnered national attention for their aggressive offensive and defensive skills. Sophomore transfer Shamari Tyson, who transferred in from Southeastern Illinois College, this season moved up to 16th from 19th in the nation in assists per game with an average of 5.7. She jumped from 22nd in the nation to the number 9 spot in three-point shooting with a 44.8 success rate and ranked 40th in steals with an average of 2.9 per game.
Sophomore Yasriyyah Wazeerund-Din is currently the third best three-point percentage shooter in the nation. She climbed from 9th to 3rd by hitting 47.1 percent of her shots from three-point territory. The leader is from Motlow State at 52.2 percent. Yasriyyah Wazeerund-Din is also ranked 14th in the nation in steals with 3.4 per game.
Sophomore Anna McKendree was the fourth Lady Jet to earn recognition. She was also listed in two different NJCAA individual stats this week. She is ranked 11th in the nation in steals with an average of 3.5 per game and she was also listed as 24th in three-point percentage shooting. She has hit 42.7 percent of her three-point attempts this season.
The Lady Jets and the Jets will play at home on Wednesday, February 11th when they host Georgia Highlands at 5:30 and 7:30 p.m. in the Hangar on the Americus campus. The Lady Jets can clinch the GCAA regular season conference for the fourth straight year with a win Wednesday. The remainder of the Lady Jets games will be on the road but they should host the NJCAA Region XVII District Tournament on February 28th and 29th.
The Jets will travel for the next three games after Georgia Highlands before hosting Gordon State College on February 29th at 7 p.m. following the GCAA women’s championship game. The men’s District XVII tournament begins on March 3rd with the quarter-finals.