Tis the season for end-of-fall power rankings!
After some quality fall competition it’s now time for us to unveil what our women’s writer, Keith Raynor, believes to be the hierarchy of Southern Appalachian women’s ultimate. To the rankings!
9. Georgia Southern
7. Georgia College
6. Georgia State
This five is a bit of a mixed back and it is tough to predict much of anything come spring. UTC is the most likely to make a big move to the top of the heap, but right now, GSU is the most talented team on paper. They need some depth and some legs, but their top end is comparable to the teams above them in the power rankings.
Not unlike Georgia, Emory also seems to be still figuring things out. Itchfest was a mixed bag, losing to teams you’d expect and beating teams you’d expect, save a double game point loss to Tennessee. Getting blown out by Tulane again is not a great sign, but Luna is clearly asking a lot of young players to step into big roles. They’ll need to find a new identity, maybe as a scrappy team, something they haven’t had to do in a while, usually relying on skill. There will be a lot of pressure on this team to perform come spring.
With the storylines of the top 3 teams, it would be easy to overlook that BOS made a key move up the ladder with their fall. Itchfest victories over both Kennesaw and Emory are proof that this team could find their way to regionals. Tennessee also added a 3rd place showing at Hootenany to their resume. Emily Rosson is a big versatile matchup problem and Sierra Rimmer is dangerous as a handler. Speedy Sarah Myers and Machen Picard attack downfield. May want to buy your Big Orange Screw stock now.
3. Kennesaw State
KSU has been working hard to make a believer out of you. A 9th place showing at CCC was followed up with an identical placement at Itchfest. But the inconsistency Strix displayed in Nashville shows they haven’t quite asserted themselves yet; KSU is going through growing pains. A loss to Tennessee to kick off Sunday of Itchfest was not good, but Kennesaw clearly has a longer term plan to make it to regionals for the first time.
It’s just the fall, so don’t hit the panic button on Dawgma yet. But it is clear that UGA is going through a transitional period. At CCC, they were taken down by UNC and Virginia Tech and struggled to dispatch Emory. They rebounded Sunday, but there’s clearly work to be done. A double-digit rookie class means it’ll be a process for Dawgma, but the veteran contributions of Michelle Yang and Caroline Marsh should give them some athletes to model themselves after. Don’t be surprised if the Dawgs find their bite this spring.
1. Georgia Tech
A strong fall start for Georgia Tech has put them in the position to potentially generate national buzz. 3rd place at CCC and 2nd at Itchfest reveals some of the potential Wreck has and is why they’ve taken the top spot in the Conference. Megan Yang is clearly a star in the making, while Dana Rose also emerged with her fall performance. The questions for this team are about how they handle being a top team and if they’ll be seeking out more elite tournaments in the spring.