Chris Kendrick (@CKendrick86)
ATTLEBORO, Mass. – The Elms College women's soccer team was picked to finish second in the conference standings in the 2016 New England Collegiate Conference (NECC) Women's Soccer Coaches' Preseason Poll, announced by the conference office Wednesday.
Elms collected 88 total points, including one first-place vote, finishing 11 points back of preseason favorite Lesley University. The Blazers are returning 15 players from the 2015 squad, who set the program mark for wins in a season last year. In 2015, Elms posted a 16-5-2 overall mark with an 8-1 conference record, and advanced to the NECC Championship game for the fourth straight season. After falling in the title game to Lesley, the Blazers made their first-ever appearance in the Eastern College Athletic Conference (ECAC) Championship tournament, and advanced to the semifinals. Senior Kathleen Tuechler (Farmingdale, N.Y.), and juniors Brie Voight (Springfield, Mass.) and Jackie Soucia (Belchertown, Mass.) are back after taking home All-Conference honors last season.
Lesley University chases their fifth straight NECC championship collecting nine of ten first place votes from the leagues head coaches, for a total of 99 points.
The Lynx return 17 players from a season ago highlighted by their 2015 All-NECC First Team representatives, sophomore Jordan Mitchell and seniorJulie Essick. Mitchell finished the 2015 season tied for fourth in the NECC in points and second in assists.
Southern Vermont College hopes to get back to the playoffs on the heals of the reigning NECC Rookie of the Year, Molly Madore.
Becker College finishes fourth in the polls with 67 points, but will have a void to fill as they will be without the 2015 NECC Player of the Year Alison Mosdale. Just a few points behind in the standings is Regis with 62, earning them fifth place. The Pride will look to first year head coach Mike Webber and their young squad throughout the 2016 season.
Closing the polls in sixth Newbury College (46 points), in seventh Mitchell College (45 points), in eighth Wheelock College (27 points), in ninth Bay Path University (22 points), and Daniel Webster College with 15 points.
Most NECC teams will begin their seasons with nonconference match ups on Thursday, September 1st. All NECC teams begin conference play on Saturday, September 17th.
2016 NECC Women's Soccer Preseason Coaches' Poll
Lesley 99 (9)
Elms – 88 (1)
Southern Vermont - 80
Becker - 67
Regis – 62
Newbury - 46
Mitchell - 45
Wheelock - 27
Bay Path – 21
Daniel Webster - 15