Aug 19, 2013
CENTER VALLEY, Pa. - Primed for its first season of Patriot League play this fall, Boston University claimed the No. 1 spot in the 2013 preseason women's soccer poll and placed a pair of student-athletes on the preseason All-Patriot League squad.
One of those two Terriers, senior forward Madison Clemens, was named the preseason Offensive Player of the Year, while Navy junior defender Jade Seabrook garnered the preseason Defensive Player of the Year nod.
Colgate and Navy, the two squads to advance to last season's League title game, tied for the lead with three preseason All-League selections apiece. Army and Boston University placed two each, while Lehigh had one.
The Terriers, riding a 32-match win streak against conference foes and 10 consecutive seasons with double-digit wins, garnered 152 points and 12 first-place votes to top the poll. Navy was second with 144 points and four first-place ballots, while defending champion Colgate was third with 138 points and the four remaining first-place votes.
Joining BU in the Patriot League this season is Loyola Maryland, fresh off a conference championship and an appearance in the NCAA Women's College Cup. The Greyhounds were picked fourth with 101 points, just ahead of fifth-place Army with 98 points. Lehigh claimed the sixth spot with 73 points.
Rounding out the rest of the poll were Bucknell (seventh, 69 points), American and Holy Cross (tied for eighth, 47), and Lafayette (10th, 31).
The poll and preseason All-League voting were conducted by the League's head coaches and sports information directors who could not cast ballots for their own teams or players.
Clemens started 18 of 19 contests last season for the Terriers, netting team highs in goals (8) and points (16) with one game-winning marker. She was a first-team All-America East selection and was named to the NSCAA All-Northeast Region third team. Half of her scoring output came in conference contests.
Seabrook, the reigning Patriot League Defensive Player of the Year, earned third-team All-America honors from the NSCAA and was a first-team All-Northeast selection in 2012. Navy's leader on defense, Seabrook also contributed offensively with a pair of goals and four assists for eight points.
In addition to Clemens, Boston University (12-6-1, 8-0-0 America East in 2012) placed senior midfielder Emma Clark on the Preseason All-League squad. Clark tied for second on the Terriers last season with nine points (4g, 1a) and started all 19 matches. The Terriers return five of their top six scorers from a year ago. Senior Andrea Green (11-7-1, 0.86 GAA) minds the net.
Navy (19-2-1, 6-0-1 Patriot) comes into 2013 after a tremendous season overall, but the Mids are looking to erase the disappointment that came with falling in the finals of the Patriot League Tournament to visiting Colgate. Preseason All-League picks Ashlynn Soellner (10g, 9a) and Elizabeth Hoerner (17-2-1, 1.06 GAA) are both coming off All-League performances a year ago, with Hoerner also the reigning Goalkeeper and Scholar-Athlete of the Year.
Fresh off its 12th Patriot League title and sixth NCAA Tournament appearance, defending champion Colgate (11-6-4, 4-1-2) hopes reigning Rookie of the Year and Preseason All-Leaguer Catherine Williams (11g, 8a) can replace some of the scoring that leaves with the graduated Jillian Kinter (14g, 9a). She'll also have help from junior forward Jenna Raepple (4g, 6a) and junior midfielder Caroline Brawner (7g, 5a), both Preseason All-League selections.
The other Patriot League team to appear in last year's NCAA Tournament is Loyola Maryland (12-6-4, 6-2-1 MAAC). The Greyhounds graduated a deep senior class, and the bulk of the offense will fall to senior Katelyn McFadden, who is the top returning scorer with three goals and two assists for eight points last season. While Loyola reloads offensively, the goal is tended by senior Didi Haracic (12-6-4, 1.14 GAA), who was named MAAC Goalkeeper of the Year to go with first-team all-conference and third-team NSCAA All-Northeast honors.
Army (8-10-0, 3-4-0) looks to rebound off an up-and-down season in which it missed out on the League Tournament, despite being tied for fourth place, because of a tiebreaker. Marcia McDermott assumed the program's reigns in January after serving most recently as an assistant coach for the U.S. Women's National Team. She inherits a program that is two years removed from its most recent League crown, and boasts a roster with a pair of Preseason All-Leaguers in seniors Joey Molacek (7g, 3a) in the midfield and Molly McGuigan (18gp, 2a) on defense.
Lehigh (5-13-0, 3-4-0) won its last three regular-season League contests to vault into the League Tournament, its first postseason appearance since winning the 2010 championship. The Mountain Hawks' season ended in the semifinals at Navy, but fourth-year head coach Eric Lambinus hopes the late-season surge in 2012 translates to early success in '13. Sophomore defender Paige Elliott (2g, 2a) was named Preseason All-League, while the Mountain Hawks return their top five scorers from a year ago, led by senior Murphee Greeley (6g, 2a).
Following six straight League Tournament appearances, 2012 marked the second straight season without a postseason berth for Bucknell (10-9-0, 3-4-0), which finished in a three-way logjam for fourth but out of the playoff picture. The offense is in great hands with the top five scorers all scheduled back in 2013, with senior Chelsey Garkowski (8g, 3a) and junior Courtney Nelson (5g, 5a) leading the way. With two-time second-team All-League goalkeeper Sandita McDermott having graduated, the responsibility in net will fall to one of three underclassmen on the preseason roster.
American (6-10-3, 4-2-1) rebounded from a 1-6-1 start to four League victories and the No. 3 seed in the Patriot League Tournament. The Eagles couldn't get past Colgate in the semifinals, and now first-year head coach Anabel Jimenez Hering is charged with getting them back to the tournament in back-to-back seasons for the first time since 2004. Jimenez's name has been synonymous with American women's soccer for the last decade. A 2004 graduate, she was a four-year starter and has been an assistant coach the last five seasons. The Eagles graduated their top two scorers but bring back junior goalkeeper Charlene Belanger (6-8-3, 1.41 GAA), who blanked four straight League opponents during the season.
Holy Cross (6-11-1, 2-5-0) enters 2013 with hopes of ending the longest postseason drought in the League. The Crusaders haven't qualified for the League Tournament since 2000, when they won their only championship and, coincidentally, faced Boston University in the NCAA Tournament. Junior Gina Righini (5g, 2a) was a first-team All-League performer last year and leads the Crusaders' top three returning scorers from a year ago. Sophomore Annie Galvin (4g) boosts the attack, and junior Carly McCabe (5-7-1, 1.11 GAA) returns in goal.
Lafayette (4-12-2, 1-6-0) suffered a disappointing season following an appearance in the 2011 Patriot League Tournament. The Leopards will miss first-team All-League forward Jill Dozier (9g, 2a in 2012) and four-year starting goalkeeper Lauren Smedley, who both graduated. Junior forwards Alyssa Finelli (4g, 2a) and Jaclyn Giordano (3g) will look to pick up the offense, while seniors Avery Jackson and Catherine Galgano, and junior Alex Reisinger anchor the back line. Mick Statham is in his eighth year as head coach.
The season begins Friday with eight teams in action. Colgate opens the slate with a 1:30 p.m. match against New Hampshire in the Vermont Tournament in Burlington, Vt. Four contests are set for 4 p.m., with American hosting George Washington, Loyola Maryland visiting Towson, Bucknell entertaining Rider and Holy Cross battling Maine in a neutral site contest in Portland, Maine. The remaining three tilts are scheduled for 7 p.m. with Boston University hosting Dayton, Army welcoming Fairfield and Navy playing hosting to North Carolina State.
Lafayette's campaign begins Sunday when the Leopards host Manhattan for a noon start in Easton, Pa. Lehigh will be the last of the 10 to begin its season when it entertains Monmouth on Thursday, Aug. 29 at 7 p.m.
With the expansion of the Patriot League to 10 members for 2013, the field for its women's soccer tournament will increase as well from four qualifiers to six. The top two seeds will earn byes to the semifinals, while the No. 3 seed will host No. 6 and No. 4 will host No. 5 in the quarterfinals on Tuesday, Nov. 5. The top seed will host the semifinals on Friday, Nov. 8, and the championship on Sunday, Nov. 10. The tournament will re-seed following the quarterfinals.
2013 Preseason Poll
1. Boston University - 152 points (12 first-place votes)
2. Navy - 144 (4)
3. Colgate - 138 (4)
4. Loyola Maryland - 101
5. Army - 98
6. Lehigh - 73
7. Bucknell - 69
T8. American - 47
T8. Holy Cross - 47
10. Lafayette - 31
Preseason All-League Team
Madison Clemens, Boston University, Sr., F
Jenna Raepple, Colgate, Jr., F
Catherine Williams, Colgate, So., F
Ashlynn Soellner, Navy, Sr., F
Joey Molacek, Army, Sr., M
Emma Clark, Boston University, Sr., M
Caroline Brawner, Colgate, Jr., M
Molly McGuigan, Army, Sr., D
Paige Elliott, Lehigh, So., D
Jade Seabrook, Navy, Jr., D
Elizabeth Hoerner, Navy, Sr., GK
Preseason Offensive Player of the Year - Madison Clemens, Boston University, Sr., F
Preseason Defensive Player of the Year - Jade Seabrook, Navy, Jr., D