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Carroll basketball teams move up in latest NAIA top-25 poll

Jovan Sljivancanin against Montana Tech 2021

Carroll's Jovan Sljivancanin drives the basketball against Montana Tech during a game inside the PE Center (2020-21 season).

Both Carroll basketball programs moved up in the latest NAIA coaches top-25 poll released on Wednesday.

The men, who were ranked No. 10 in the preseason, moved up five spots to No. 5 after a 7-0 start to the season. Carroll is ranked behind Saint Francis, Loyola, William Penn and Arizona Christian.

The women advanced one position in Wednesday’s poll, moving up to No. 6. Carroll is 4-1 so far this season and has won its last four games. The Saints’ lone defeat came against Southeastern  the No. 5 women’s program in the NAIA  in their season-opener.

Carroll is the only NAIA school in the nation with both basketball programs ranked in the top-6.

Carroll’s men’s team is coming off an 8-point win against a nationally-ranked College of Idaho team in Butte. Carroll is led by Jovan Sljivancanin who is averaging 19 points, 12.7 rebounds and 3.1 assists per game. He has six double-doubles in seven games thus far.

Shamrock Campbell (16.3) and Ifeanyi Okeke (10.6) also average double-digit points per game for a Saints team that made the NAIA National Tournament Round of 8 last season.

Dani Wagner is averaging 16.2 points as Carroll’s women’s leading-scorer. Both Christine Denny (13.2) and Jamie Pickens (13) are scoring, on average, at least 13 points per game.

Carroll is scheduled to play a doubleheader against Our Lady of the Lake University on Wednesday night. The women’s game is slated for 5 p.m., with the men’s contest to follow around 7 p.m.

Carroll is the lone Frontier Conference men’s team represented in the latest top-25 poll. On the women’s side, Montana Western checks in at No. 24 after a 3-1 start to the season, while Providence is currently in the “receiving votes” category of the poll.

Email Daniel Shepard at or find him on Twitter @IR_DanielS.


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