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Norse Women Move Into Top 50 in Latest RPI Basketball Rankings

The Northern Kentucky University women’s basketball team earned its highest-ever ranking in the RPI, as published by the NCAA, on Tuesday. NKU claimed the No. 50 spot in the list, which ranks all 349 Division I basketball teams and is used as a criteria for selection to the NCAA Tournament.

The Norse are off to their best start in the Division I era, standing at 5-1 after a 72-70 come-from-behind victory on the road against Robert Morris on Sunday afternoon. The opening is the best NKU has seen since the 2008-09 season, when the Norse won their first 16 consecutive games en route to a 29-3 final record.

Last season, the Norse finished at No. 143 in the RPI after reaching the Atlantic Sun Conference Championship final and making their third consecutive appearance in the Women’s Basketball Invitational, finishing with a 19-14 overall record.

NKU is one of four Horizon League teams ranked in the initial RPI top 100. Undefeated Youngstown State leads the pack at No. 20, followed by NKU, Green Bay (No. 69) and UIC (No. 79).

The Norse return to action at BB&T Arena on Wednesday, when they take on the Kentucky Wildcats, who are ranked at No. 11 in not only the RPI, but the AP and USA Today national polls. Tipoff is set for 7 p.m., with the action broadcast live on ESPN3.

- Staff report