Aug. 24, 2006
Lehigh University was chosen to win the Patriot League in vote by Patriot League head coaches and sports information directors in the Women's Preseason Soccer Polls.
The Mountain Hawks received seven first-place votes and 89 points overall. The reigning Patriot League regular season co-champions have yet to win the Patriot League title. Last year, Lehigh racked up 14 wins including 13 shutouts, setting a school record. Twenty members return including the Patriot League's two-time Offensive Player of the Year, midfielder Gina Lewandowski (Coopersburg, Pa.) and the Patriot League's Co-Rookie and Co-Goalkeeper of the Year, Julie Kafka (Baltimore, Md.), who allowed the fewest goals in Division I women's soccer last season.
Colgate received one more first-place vote than Lehigh with eight, but only a total of 87 overall points. The Patriot League regular season co-champions lost to Army in last year's Patriot League tournament semifinals. Returning to the field for the Raiders will be Brine Co-Rookie of the Year, Josie Johnson (Wilmette, Ill.) who started all 17 games and led the team in assists.
Coming in with one first-place vote was Navy with 69 total points. Last season, Bucknell ended Navy's chances of post season action with a penalty kick. The Midshipmen won their first Patriot League crown in 2003.
Reigning Patriot League Champion, Bucknell, received 68 votes. Last season, they became the first fourth-seeded team in history to win the Patriot League's Women's Soccer Championship. It was their second title, ending the season with a loss to Penn State in the NCAA Tournament.
Army (52), American (41), Holy Cross (22) and Lafayette (20) completed the poll.
The top four teams in the standings at the end of the season will play in the Patriot League Tournament on November 3 and 5 at the highest seed's location. The 2006 season opens August 25 with Bucknell facing Temple in the Temple Tournament.