By DOUG FEINBERG, AP Basketball Writer
NEW YORK (AP) — UConn finishes No. 1 in The Associated Press women’s basketball poll for the fifth straight year.
The Huskies (32-0) enter the NCAA Tournament as the lone unbeaten team and went wire-to-wire as the unanimous top team. They received all 32 votes from the national media panel Monday.
“For this team to finish at the top of the AP poll at this point says a lot about the hard work the players and coaches put in this season,” UConn coach Geno Auriemma said. “It’s an honor to be in this spot, and hopefully we’re still here in a month.”
It’s the 15th time in school history that UConn is No. 1 in final poll of the season. The Huskies remained perfect, winning the American Athletic Conference championship Tuesday night.
Nine times they ended as the top-ranked team, the Huskies went on to win the national championship, including 2013-16.
Baylor, Louisville, Mississippi State and Notre Dame followed UConn in the poll. Oregon, South Carolina, Texas, UCLA and Ohio State round out the first 10 teams.
Most of the Top 25 teams finished playing before the week began and the only change from last week’s poll was Maryland and Missouri switching places at No. 16 and 17.
Here are a few other tidbits from the Top 25:
CONFERENCE SUPREMECY: The Southeastern Conference reigned with seven teams in the final poll, led by Mississippi State. South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas A&M, Missouri, Georgia and LSU joined the Bulldogs as ranked teams for most of the season. The Atlantic Coast Conference was next with five in the Top 25. The Pac-12 had four teams while the Big Ten, Big 12 and American each had two.
MID-MAJOR POWERS: Green Bay, Belmont and Mercer weren’t part of the preseason poll, but the three mid-major programs all spent the last few weeks of the season ranked. All three won their conference tournaments.
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