Queens’ men’s basketball team, off to its best start in program history, is also climbing the national NCAA Division II rankings.
The Royals, who went into the holiday break with an 11-0 record (5-0 South Atlantic Conference), is ranked 12th among D-II teams in the latest National Association of Basketball Coaches (NABC) poll, and 14th in the D2 Sports Information Directors of America (D2SIDA) media rankings.
Queens is one of two SAC teams in the national rankings, joining Lincoln Memorial (10-1, 6-0), which is ranked 13th in the NABC Division II poll and No. 7 in the D2SIDA media poll.
The Railsplitters, the defending SAC champions and the preseason favorites to repeat, are also ranked No. 1 and the Royals No. 2 in the latest Division II Southeast Region rankings.
Queens, coached by Bart Lundy, is one of four Division II teams nationwide to remain undefeated entering the new year, along with Cal Poly-Pomona (11-0), West Liberty (Pa.) (10-0) and Western Oregon (11-0).
he Royals also are among the nation’s best shooting teams, ranked fifth among D-II schools in field goal percentage at 51.7 percent and in the top 30 in three other categories – total steals (21st, 104), turnovers forced (25th, 17.73 per game), and steals per game (26th, 9.5).
Among individual players, Queens senior forward Sean Morgan is fifth in the nation in field goal percentage at 70.0 percent.
Lacrosse schedule set
Queens’ men’s lacrosse team, coming off a co-regular season title in the South Atlantic Conference, will play a 15-game schedule in 2016.
The Royals finished 9-8 overall and 7-1 SAC last year, sharing the league’s regular-season championship with Coker.
Queens opens its 2016 schedule on Jan. 30 with a two-match exhibition against North Greenville and Methodist. A week later, the Royals begin their official regular season schedule against Florida Southern.
Queens also has home nonconference matches scheduled against Alderson Broaddus (Feb. 13), Belmont Abbey (Feb. 24), and Mercyhurst (March 26); and road games against Pfeiffer (Feb. 20), Limestone (March 8), and Mount Olive (April 20).
The Royals will play SAC home games against Lincoln Memorial (Feb. 27), Mars Hill (March 12), Tusculum (April 2), and Lenoir-Rhyne (April 9); and conference games on the road against Catawba (March 5), Brevard (March 19), Wingate (March 30), and Coker (April 16).
The South Atlantic Conference tournament also will hold its semifinal and championship matched at the Queens Sports Complex field April 28-30.
Dreesens swims with European team
Queens men’s swimmer Dion Dreesens, a native of the Netherlands, swam with the European team against a team of U.S. swimmers in the Duel in the Pool meet Dec. 11-12 in Indianapolis, Ind.
“We were excited to get the call,” said Royals coach Jeff Dugdale, who served as an assistant coach with the European team. “Being an Olympic year, the level of competition is exactly what he needs. Dion thrives on situations like this.”
Dreesens, a sophomore, competed in three events for the European team. He finished sixth in the men’s 100-meter freestyle in 48.40 seconds, and in the men’s 200-meter freestyle in 1 minute, 45.01 seconds.
Dreesens wrapped up competition in the Duel in the Pool by swimming the third leg in the men’s 400-meter freestyle relay, which finished second to the U.S. team in 3:08.32. The U.S. won in 3:05.42.
Bill Kiser is a freelance writer: email@example.com.