Friday, February 15, 2013

Gold Nuggets return to top 10, Gold Rush drop to 14th

NEW ORLEANS — Xavier University of Louisiana's women climbed, but the men dropped back in the NAIA Division I Coaches' Top 25 polls announced Tuesday afternoon.

The Gold Nuggets were 10th — their fourth time in nine polls this season to reach the top 10. The Gold Rush were 14th after falling three places. Both teams were 11th the previous week.

Xavier is one of six women's teams — the others are Campbellsville, Freed-Hardeman, Lee (Tenn.), Oklahoma City and Vanguard — to be ranked in every top 25 since the start of the 2010-11 season. The Gold Nuggets have appeared in the last 40 polls, the sixth-longest active streak.

Although the XU men equaled their biggest drop of the season, it's their fifth consecutive top-15 appearance. The Gold Rush are in the top 25 for the 20th consecutive time, fourth longest among NAIA DI men. Xavier was fifth in that category a week ago, but Rogers State fell out after 24 consecutive appearances.

Both the Gold Nuggets (21-4 overall, 9-2 Gulf Coast Athletic Conference) and the Gold Rush (21-6, 8-3) share first place in the conference — the women with Talladega and city rival SUNO, and the men with Philander Smith. Both XU teams will travel to SUNO on Saturday for a doubleheader at The Castle. And for the second time in four days, the starting times have changed. The women's game will tip off at 3 p.m., followed by the men's game at 5.

The next XU home games will be their regular-season finales, Feb. 23 against Dillard in the Crosstown Classic at the new Convocation Center. Starting times that day also will be 3 and 5 p.m.

By Ed Cassiere, Sports Information Director

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