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ATLANTA, Ga. - Benedict’s junior forward, Ay’Anna Bey, was selected as the 2019 Southern Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (SIAC) Women’s Basketball Preseason Player of the Year and Miles’ senior guard Najla Shamsid-Deen has earned the Preseason Defensive Player of the Year, announced Wednesday by the league office.siac09 logo
 
The preseason honors and predicted order of finish are voted on by the league’s head coaches and sports information directors. 
 
Entering her third season with the Lady Tigers of Benedict College, Ay’Anna Bey has been named the 2019-2020 SIAC Preseason Player of the Year. Coming off a great season, Bey has garnished two distinctive honors for her efforts. As the reigning SIAC Player of the Year and Top Female Student- Athlete of the Year at Benedict, Bey led the Lady Tigers to an extraordinary undefeated season in conference play last year. Averaging 38 minutes a game, Bey averaged 23.7 points and 12.5 rebounds while shooting over 62 percent from the field (220-355), 44 percent from the three-point line, and 78 percent from the free-throw line. Ranking top ten in Division II for both points and rebounds a game, Bey was selected All-South Region and was an honorable mention selection by the Women’s Basketball Coaches Association (WBCA). The New Jersey native tallied 338 rebounds with 39 assists, 28 blocks, and 33 steals during her 2018-2019 campaign and is looking to lead her team to another undefeated season.
 
Entering her senior campaign with the Golden Bears, Najla Shamsid-Deen has been named this year’s Defensive Player of the Year. As a junior, Shamsid-Deen averaged 5.9 points and 2.1 rebounds for the Lady Bears and was the catalyst of their stellar defense only allowing teams to score 54.8 points a game. The Stone Mountain native led the Bears in steals with 60 on the season with an average of 2.4 a game and ranked 26th for Division II in steals.
 
Joining Bey and Shamsid-Deen on the 2019 SIAC Women’s Basketball Preseason Team are Tiffany Valentine (Spring Hill), Alicia Franklin (Fort Valley State), Reagan Jackson (Clark Atlanta), Keondra Archie (Paine), Takyra Gilbert (Central State), Reyana Miller (Clark Atlanta), India Blakely (Tuskegee), Jessie Kee (Kentucky State) who were also named to the 2018-2019 SIAC Women’s Basketball All-Conference Team. New additions include Shelle Daniels of Tuskegee University. 
 
2019-20 SIAC Women’s Basketball Preseason Team
 
First Team

Name Position Institution Classification Hometown
Ay’anna Bey* Forward Benedict Junior Blackwood, NJ
Tiffany Valentine* Forward Spring Hill Redshirt Senior Houston, Texas
Alicia Franklin* Guard Fort Valley State Senior Atlanta, Ga
Reagan Jackson* Guard Clark Atlanta Sophomore Chesapeake, Va.
Keondra Archie* Forward Paine Junior Eastover, SC

 
Second Team

Name Position Institution Classification Hometown
Takyra Gilbert* Guard Central State Senior Hamilton, Ohio
Jessie Kee* Guard/Forward Kentucky State Senior Indianapolis, In.
Reyana Miller* Guard Clark Atlanta Senior Rialto, Ca.
India Blakely* Guard Tuskegee Senior Troy, Ala.
Shelle Daniels Small Forward Tuskegee Senior Indianapolis, Ind.
Najla Shamsid-Deen Guard Miles Senior Stone Mountain, Ga.

 
*Indicates returner for 2018-19 SIAC All-Conference Team
 
Superlatives
Preseason Player of the Year: Ay’Anna Bey, Benedict
Preseason Defensive Player of the Year: Najla Shamsid-Deen, Miles
 
Preseason Rankings
Eastern Division

  1. Benedict
  2. Clark Atlanta
  3. Savannah State
  4. Paine
  5. Albany State
  6. Fort Valley State

 
Western Division

  1. Kentucky State
  2. Tuskegee
  3. Central State
  4. Lane
  5. Miles
  6. LeMoyne-Owen
  7. Spring Hill
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