Wayne State senior forward Erin Norling was voted the Preseason NSIC South Division Player of the Year.
As a team, the Wildcats were tied for fifth with Southwest Minnesota State in the Preseason South Division coaches poll. Wayne State returns all five starters from last year’s team that finished 16-13 overall and 11-11 in the NSIC South Division.
Minnesota State was the selection as the team to beat in the NSIC South Division with 43 points and three first-place votes. Augustana and Winona State tied for second with each team collecting 35 points and two first-place tallies. Sioux Falls was fourth at 27 points and the remaining first-place vote while WSC and SMSU tied for fifth with 26 points apiece. Concordia-St. Paul (25) and Upper Iowa (7) round out the NSIC South Division poll.
Minnesota Duluth was a unanimous choice to claim top honors in the NSIC North Division this year with 49 points and seven first-place votes. St. Cloud State was second at 41 points with MSU Moorhead third at 37 points. Rounding out the NSIC North Division are University of Mary (32), Northern State (23), Bemidji State (22), Minot State (11) and Minnesota Crookston (7).
Norling, a 5-foot-11 senior forward from Loretto, Minn., was voted the NSIC South Division Preseason Player of the Year and the Wildcat to Watch in the NSIC this season. Last season, Norling earned a second consecutive first-team All-NSIC selection after averaging 19.9 points and 8.0 rebounds per game. She scored double figures in every contest last season, including 15 games of 20 or more points, and ranked second in the NSIC in scoring and fourth in rebounding. Norling became the 21st player in school history to reach 1,000 points last season and enters this year 12th in all-time scoring with 1,336 points.
Wayne State is scheduled to open the 2020-21 season on Saturday, Jan. 2 at Northern State.
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