Rock Hill, S.C. – The Brevard College women’s soccer team were selected ninth in the preseason South Atlantic Conference coaches poll announced today. The Tornados will compete as full NCAA Division II and South Atlantic Conference members in 2008.
Lincoln Memorial University, the defending South Atlantic Conference women’s soccer regular season and tournament champions, are the favorites to win the 2008 championship, in a poll of the league’s nine head coaches. The Lady Railsplitters received six first-place votes and 74 points.
Lincoln Memorial placed three on the preseason All-Conference team, which was also announced.
Midfielder Becky Thompson and defender Lea Cataggio were named to the first team, while forward Karina Campos was named to the second team.
Catawba College is picked to finish second. The Catawba Indians received one first-place vote and 65 total points.
Catawba placed four on the preseason All-Conference team. Midfielder Lainey Nichols is joined on the first team by defenders Nikki Blackwelder and Alyssa Schoenberg. Another defender, Alexa Baird, was named to the second team.
Carson-Newman is picked to finish third. The Lady Eagles received one first-place vote and 64 total points. Carson-Newman is ranked 22nd in the National Soccer Coaches Association of America preseason poll.
Carson-Newman placed two on the preseason All-Conference first team in forward Nikki Brennen and midfielder Morgan Gruendenfelder. Defender Shea Kinzer was named to the second team.
Tusculum College is picked fourth. The Pioneers also received one first-place vote and garnered 60 total points.
Tusculum advanced to the finals of the NCAA DII Southeast Region tournament last year and are ranked 11th in the NSCAA preseason poll.
Tusculum led the way with five preseason All-Conference selections. All-American midfielder Courtney Turner is joined on the first team by forward Danielle Tanner and defender Nicole Ferris. Midfielder Elisha Robertson and defender Heather Craft were named to the second team.
Mars Hill College is picked to finish fifth. The Lions received 42 points.
Mars Hill has three preseason All-Conference picks. Forward Abby Martin is on the first team, while forward Alicia Blaha and midfielder Caity Murnahan were named to the second team.
Newberry College, under first-year coach Karrie Miller, is picked to finish sixth, picking up 34 points.
Defender Elizabeth Jones is a preseason All-Conference second team selection for Newberry.
Lenoir-Rhyne University is seventh in the preseason poll with 29 points.
The Bears have three on the preseason All-Conference team. Forward Rebecca Lin was named to the preseason All-Conference first team, while forward Lauren Rosch, Lenoir-Rhyne and midfielder Michelle Garcia were selected to the second team.
Wingate University is eighth, receiving 27 points.
The Bulldogs placed four on the preseason All-Conference team. Forward Kerstin Williams and goalkeeper Kathryn Smith were named to the first team, while midfielders Julie Zielinski and Lisa Service were both named to the second team.
Brevard College rounds out the poll receiving 10 total points. The Tornados finished last year with an overall record of 4-15-1 as BC competed as provisional members of both the NCAA and the South Atlantic Conference.
The Tornados return most of their roster, including 10 of 11 starters from a year ago, but have also added much needed depth by way of 13 freshman, by far one of Coach Liz Stojetz’ largest recruiting classes in her tenure at Brevard.
The 2008 season opens Friday, Aug. 29 with five matches.
The 2008 Food Lion SAC Women’s Soccer Tournament will culminate with the semifinals at the Manchester Meadows soccer stadium in Rock Hill, S.C., Friday, Nov. 7, with the finals on Sunday, Nov. 9.
2008 SAC WOMEN’S SOCCER COACHES POLL
Pl School Pts.
1. Lincoln Memorial (6) 74
2. Catawba (1) 65
3. Carson-Newman (1) 64
4. Tusculum (1) 60
5. Mars Hill 42
6. Newberry 34
7. Lenoir-Rhyne 29
8. Wingate 27
9. Brevard 10
(First place votes in parenthesis)
2008 Preseason All-SAC
Forward - Nikki Brennen, Carson Newman
Forward - Rebecca Lin, Lenoir-Rhyne
Forward - Abby Martin, Mars Hill
Forward - Kerstin Williams, Wingate
Forward - Danielle Tanner, Tusculum
Midfielder - Morgan Gruendenfelder, Carson-Newman
Midfielder - Lainey Nichols, Catawba
Midfielder - Becky Thompson, Lincoln Memorial
Midfielder - Courtney Turner, Tusculum
Defender - Nikki Blackwelder, Catawba
Defender - Alyssa Schoenberg, Catawba
Defender - Lea Cataggio, Lincoln Memorial
Defender - Nicole Ferris, Tusculum
Goalkeeper – Kathryn Smith, Wingate
Forward – Lauren Rosch, Lenoir-Rhyne
Forward – Karina Campos, Lincoln Memorial
Forward – Alicia Blaha, Mars Hill
Midfielder – Elisha Robertson, Tusculum
Midfielder - Michelle Garcia, Lenoir-Rhyne
Midfielder - Caity Murnahan, Mars Hill
Midfielder - Julie Zielinski, Wingate
Midfielder – Lisa Service, Wingate
Defender – Shea Kinzer, Carson-Newman
Defender – Alexa Baird, Catawba
Defender – Heather Craft, Tusculum
Defender - Elizabeth Jones, Newberry