[AMERICA EAST: Women]Despite losing eight starters, Hartford has been picked as the favorite in the 2013 preseason coaches’ poll, edging out reigning America East tournament champion Stony Brook by just two points.
Maine came in third with 49 points, followed by Vermont in fourth with 38 points and New Hampshire in fifth with 35 points. University at Albany edged out Binghamton in sixth by only one point, receiving 29 and 28 points respectively. UMBC (15) and UMass Lowell (8) rounded out the nine-team poll.
Hartford is coming off an 11-5-3 mark last season, including 6-2-0 in conference play before falling to Stony Brook, 1-0, in the America East title game. Sophomore forward Elise Galipo is the top returning offensive threat, totaling four goals and three assists last season. She is joined by senior returners Arielle Aikens and Raelynn Mikell.
Stony Brook (12-7-3) became the first No. 6 seed and the second-lowest seed in any America East sport to capture a conference title. The Seawolves bring back a very strong core, including forward Larissa Nysch and defender Ahriel Fernandez.