The University of Kentucky women’s basketball team was picked to match last season’s performance in the Southeastern Conference in 2019-20.
The Wildcats, who finished fourth in the regular season in 2018-19, were voted in the league’s preseason media poll released Tuesday to do the same this season.
Also Tuesday, Kentucky sophomore Rhyne Howard was named a First Team All-SEC selection and runner-up in the preseason Player of the Year voting.
South Carolina topped the preseason voting for league champion, and was followed in the balloting by Texas A&M, Mississippi State and Kentucky. Last season, Mississippi State swept the SEC’s regular season and tournament crowns.
Following the Cats in Tuesday’s preseason voting were Arkansas, Tennessee, Auburn, LSU, Missouri, Georgia, Alabama, Florida, Mississippi and Vanderbilt.
Texas A&M’s Chennedy Carter was voted preseason Player of the Year, receiving 14 of the 17 votes. Kentucky’s Howard received two votes and Arkansas’ Chelsea Dungee one.
Howard, Dungee and Carter were joined on the First Team by LSU’s Ayana Mitchell and South Carolina’s Tyasha Harris.
Named to the Second Team were Auburn’s Unique Thompson, South Carolina’s Mikiah Herbert Harrigan, Tennessee’s Rennia Davis, Texas A&M’s Ciera Johnson and Vanderbilt’s Mariella Fasoula.
Kentucky finished 25-8 overall and 11-5 in league play last season, advancing to the second round of the NCAA Tournament before being eliminated by North Carolina State.
Howard led the Wildcats in both scoring (16.4 points per game) and rebounding (6.6 per game) and earned national freshman of the year honors.
Howard and senior guard Jaida Roper will join head coach Matthew Mitchell in Birmingham, Ala., for SEC Media Day on Thursday.
2019-20 UK schedule
(Remaining tip-off times will be announced later)
Oct. 30: SOUTHERN INDIANA, 7 p.m.-x
Nov. 5: MOUNT ST. MARY’S, 7 p.m. (SEC Network Plus)
Nov. 10: At Middle Tennessee, 3 p.m.
Nov. 13: STETSON, 7 p.m. (SEC Network Plus)
Nov. 16: At Virginia, 5 p.m. (ACC Network Extra)
Nov. 21: MOREHEAD STATE, 7 p.m. (SEC Network Plus)
Nov. 26: GRAMBLING STATE, 7 p.m. (SEC Network Plus)
Dec. 1: AUSTIN PEAY, 4 p.m. (SEC Network)
Dec. 4: CHARLOTTE, 11 a.m. (SEC Network Plus)
Dec. 8: SAMFORD, 2 p.m. (SEC Network Plus)
Dec. 11: WINTHROP, 7 p.m.-y
Dec. 15: LOUISVILLE, 1 p.m.-y (ESPN)
Dec. 21: At California, 7 p.m.
Jan. 2: At South Carolina, 7:40 p.m. (SEC Network)
Jan. 5: TENNESSEE, 4 p.m. (SEC Network or ESPN2)
Jan. 9: At Alabama, 8 p.m. (SEC Network Plus)
Jan. 12: At Florida, Noon (ESPNU)
Jan. 16: TEXAS A&M, 6:30 p.m. (SEC Network)
Jan. 19: At LSU, 2 p.m. (SEC Network)
Jan. 27: AUBURN, 7 p.m. (SEC Network)
Jan. 30: At Missouri, 7 p.m. (SEC Network)
Feb. 2: FLORIDA, 1 p.m. (SEC Network)
Feb. 6: ALABAMA, 7 p.m. (SEC Network Plus)
Feb. 9: At Arkansas, 4 p.m. (ESPN2)
Feb. 16: MISSISSIPPI STATE, 5 p.m. (ESPN2)
Feb. 20: At Mississippi, 8 p.m. (SEC Network Plus)
Feb. 23: SOUTH CAROLINA, 2 p.m. (SEC Network)
Feb. 27: GEORGIA, 7 p.m. (SEC Network Plus)
March 1: At Vanderbilt, 2:05 p.m. (SEC Network)
March 4-8: SEC Tournament-z
Note: Home games in all capital letters. x-Exhibition; y-in Rupp Arena; z-at Bon Secours Wellness Arena in Greenville, S.C.