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GC men back in NJCAA top 25

By Dustin Kent
For the first time in six weeks, the Gulf Coast men’s basketball team is nationally ranked.

The Commodores, who have been ranked as high as No. 6 in the NJCAA top 25 poll this season, returned to Monday’s latest national poll at No. 17 for the first time since being dropped from the Dec. 16 poll.

Gulf Coast (18-4 overall, 5-1 in the Panhandle Conference) got back into the rankings thanks to a run of five consecutive victories, including four in the Panhandle.

The Commodores won two games last week, knocking off Pensacola State 88-87 on the road and Northwest Florida State 86-65 at home.

Gulf Coast is now the highest-ranked Panhandle Conference team, with Tallahassee dropping five spots from No. 15 to No. 20.

This is also the case in the state poll, with Gulf Coast leapfrogging No. 3 Tallahassee (19-4) and moving up from No. 4 to No. 2.

Florida Southwestern (23-1) remains No. 1 in the state, while Indian River State (16-6) comes in at No. 4 and Central Florida (19-5) at No. 5.

The rest of the top 10 is rounded out by State College of Florida (18-6), Chipola (15-7), Polk State (16-6), Broward (13-5), and Eastern Florida State (15-9).

On the women’s side, the Lady Commodores (17-2 overall, 4-2 in the Panhandle Conference) dropped from No. 3 to No. 4 following a 1-1 week in which they lost to Pensacola State 77-73 on the road and beat Northwest Florida State 59-54 at home.

The Lady Raiders (18-4) fell from No. 9 to No. 10, while Chipola (19-3) dropped from No. 2 to No. 9 after an 0-2 week that featured losses to Northwest Florida State and Tallahassee.

Gulf Coast also ascends back to the top of the state poll with 13 of the 16 first-place votes, followed by Chipola at No. 2 with the other three votes.

Northwest Florida State is No. 3, followed by Florida Southwestern (19-5) at No. 4, and Eastern Florida State (18-5) at No. 5.

The rest of the top 10 is rounded out by Palm Beach State (13-10), Daytona State (14-9), Pensacola State (14-9), Santa Fe (13-10), Tallahassee (10-9).

Panhandle Conference standings

Men

Gulf Coast State 5-1

Tallahassee 3-2

Pensacola State 3-2

Chipola College 3-3

Northwest Florida State 0-6

Women

Gulf Coast State 4-2

Chipola College 4-2

Northwest Florida State 3-3

Pensacola State 2-3

Tallahassee 1-4

 

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