Women's Soccer stalks more wins
Lady Lions open season Fri. at MACU
2012 Pre-Season Poll ranks one RRAC team
WAXAHACHIE, Texas -- When making a climb on an unfamiliar mount, two critical tips are to watch your step and follow an experienced guide.
The young women’s soccer program at Southwestern Assemblies of God University, who began playing in 2006, is coming off their second four-win season. To rise higher, they have kept to the trail of second year Head Coach Mandy Fortner.
The former collegiate All-American adheres to strong off-season conditioning and tougher preparations in camp. The Lady Lions started with 22 players and appear to be entering the 2012 season with 16 on their roster.
Their first step in an 18-game schedule comes on Friday when they travel to Oklahoma City to face Mid-America Christian University.
Two years ago the Lady Evangels were 16-4-1 and were solid again last fall when they tamed the Lions twice (3-0, 4-0) enroute to a 12-7-1 record.
MACU will be a very good litmus test for Team Purple. The match is slated for a 2:00pm start in the Oklahoma sun.
The National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA) announced the results of the 2012 Pre-Season Coaches Poll on Tuesday. While the Lady Lions only face one team on the list, their itinerary will not lack for competition.
Lee University (Cleveland, Tenn) will begin a fourth-consecutive year at #1 in the rankings according to Alan Grosbach, the NAIA’s Manager of Communications & Sports Information. The Lady Flames (23-2-0) have clearly earned that distinction, having won the past four national championships.
The appropriately named Leah Fortune, who was the National Championship’s Outstanding Offensive Player, is back, along with 10 of Lee’s 11 starters from last fall. She finished 2011 with 24 assists.
The Chicagoland Collegiate Athletic Conference has four representatives in the Top 25. Seven other conferences have two or more teams appearing in the poll.
The Red River Athletic Conference (RRAC) has one, the University of Texas at Brownsville, at #21. The Lady Scorpions racked up a 17-3-1 (won-lost-tied) ledger last fall.
SAGU doesn’t play the Stingers until October 13, the Lady Lions’ 15th contest. It will be played during a 450-mile jaunt to the border. SAGU will also meet Our Lady of the Lake University (13-6-0) (Oct. 11) in San Antonio as part of that “far trek.” UTB and OLLU went 9-0 and 8-1 in conference action.
The poll was voted upon by a panel of head coaches representing each of the conferences, independent or unaffiliated groups of NAIA teams. The first regular-season poll will be announced on September 4. SAGU will have played three matches by then. The complete poll is posted below.
This Week: Captains named, Media Day, Twitter
Southwestern will announce their team captains this week. Wednesday, Aug. 22, is Media Day. The squad will have a photo and video shoot in the morning.
Red Oak’s Steve Patterson, of Moving Pictures, will take a host of photos, which can be purchased on-line by family and fans.
His work during home games will be available throughout the season.
The Lady Lions will have two of their games broadcast in high definition, on-line. Besides computers and laptops, those livestreamed matches can be watched on iPhones and other apps at no cost.
SAGU remains the only NAIA school in the nation to provide such broadcasts in HD.
Fans can follow all home games via a LiveStats webcast. It features a digital play-by-play of the accounts of games, score and clock as well complete team and player statistics in real time.
Southwestern fans will also be able to stay connected on Twitter @sagusports. Breaking news, score alerts and other athletic features will be posted. An official introduction of this branch of social media is in the works.
A team preview will be posted on-line later this week.
2012 NAIA Women's Soccer Preseason Top 25 Poll
|Rank||School (Location)||2011 Record||Total Poll Points|
|1||Lee University (TN)||23-2-0||560|
|3||Lindsey Wilson (KS)||19-1-2||524|
|7||Martin Methodist (TN)||14-2-2||429|
|8||Olivet Nazarene (IL)||17-3-2||425|
|10||Spring Arbor (MI)||19-3-1||409|
|13||Cal State - San Marcos||15-4-1||342|
|15||Northwood University (FL)||15-3-1||299|
|T16||Trinity Christian (IL)||16-4-2||277|
|19||Robert Morris (IL)||14-5-2||232|
|21||Texas at Brownsville||17-3-1||187|
|24||Univ of Science & Arts (OK)||15-6-0||126|
|25||Carroll College (MT)||12-4-2||101|
Others receiving votes: Siena Heights (Mich) 90; Auburn-Montgomery (Ala) 85; St. Ambrose (Iowa) 78; William Carey (Miss) 46; Southern Oregon 31; Ottawa (Kan) 19; Grand View (Iowa) 15; Biola Univ (Calif) 11; Northwest (Wash) 10; Reinhardt (Ga) 9; Brenau Univ (Ga) 7; Ashford (Iowa) 7; Oklahoma Wesleyan 4; Mount Vernon Nazarene (Ohio) 3; Rocky Mountain (Mont) 3; St. Thomas (Fla) 3; Aquinas (Mich) 3.