Hilltoppers Ranked No. 2 in Atlantic Region
INDIANAPOLIS – The defending NCAA Division II Atlantic Region champion West Liberty University men’s basketball team checked in at No. 2 on Wednesday when the NCAA Division II Ranking Committee released its first weekly set of Atlantic Region rankings for the 2021-22 season.
These are the rankings which help determine the qualifiers for next month’s NCAA Division II Atlantic Region Tournament. Each league’s tournament champion receives an automatic regional bid with the top five remaining teams in the final set of regional rankings filling out the 8-team field.
Perennial Atlantic Region power Indiana, Pa. (21-2) edged out Coach Ben Howlett’s Hilltoppers (22-2) for the top spot in the initial rankings. Fairmont State (19-4) was No. 3 with Pitt-Johnstown (18-5) and California, Pa. (15-6) completing the top five.
Mercyhurst (19-4), another perennial PSAC contender, is No. 6 with Millersville (20-4) at No. 7 and West Virginia State (18-6) holding down the 8th spot. Shippensburg (15-7) is No. 9 with Virginia Union (19-6) – the lone CIAA team to crack the rankings – rounding out the list at No. 10.
Updated regional rankings will be released on Feb. 23 and March 2 with the announcement of the 2021-22 NCAA Division II Tournament field set for March 6. The Atlantic Region Tournament will be held March 12-15 on the home floor of the highest seeded team.
The 2021-22 NCAA Division II Elite Eight will be held March 22-26 at the Ford Center in Evansville, Ind.
The Hilltoppers are home tonight for a 7:30 p.m. game against Frostburg State but will hit the road on Saturday for a crucial conference and regional test at Fairmont State. Saturday’s tipoff at Joe Retton Arena is set for 4 p.m.
NCAA Division II Atlantic Region Rankings
(Through games of Sunday, Feb. 13)
Div. II In-Region
Team Record Record
1. Indiana (Pa.) 21-2 21-2
2. WEST LIBERTY 22-2 20-2
3. Fairmont State 19-4 18-4
4. Pitt-Johnstown 18-5 18-5
5. California (Pa.) 15-6 15-6
6. Mercyhurst 19-4 19-4
7. Millersville 20-4 20-4
8. W.Va. State 18-6 16-6
9. Shippensburg 15-7 15-7
10. Virginia Union 19-6 19-6