WOMEN'S NEWS ...
The Soccer America Women's Preseason
were released today. Heading the team is Casey Nogueira
, the 2008 Soccer America Women's Player of the Year and one of three North Carolina
seniors on the Preseason All-American first team along with Whitney Engen
and Tobin Heath
. Florida State, Notre Dame
and UCLA are the only teams with two players named to the first and second teams.
Of note, seven of the Preseason All-Americans missed the 2008 postseason because they were with the U.S.
under-20 national team that won last year's world championship in Chile. UConn's Brittany Taylor
, a first-team preseason selection, was injured and missed
the entire season.
* No women's coach is more excited than Portland's Garrett Smith
that there will be no international championships during the
2009 postseason. Just about every major program lost at least one player during the NCAA Tournament to the U.S. U-20s. The Pilots, whose record 19-game winning streak ended when they fell to
Stanford in the quarterfinals, were without three starters -- Elli Reed
, Keelin Winters
and Michelle Enyeart
. Throughout her career, Sophie Schmidt
has missed time to represent various Canadian teams. When you consider that Reed,
Winters, Enyeart and Schmidt will be available all fall, that Kendra Chandhoke
returns after redshirting last season, and U-17 defender Cloee Colohan
joins the backline that returns everyone, Portland will be as deep as any team in the country. "We are going to have players on the bench this year
that would start in most years," Smith told
the Oregonian. "It's a talented group."
Florida is picked
to repeat as SEC champion for the fourth
consecutive year in the preseason poll released today. The Gators return eight starters, including All-SEC performers Ashlee Elliott
and Lauren Hyde
, from last season's squad that went 11-0-0 in league play. Florida is also picked to win the East, ahead of Georgia. In the West, LSU was first, ahead