The Central Connecticut women's soccer team was chosen to finish
second in the Northeast Conference Preseason Coaches Poll announced
on Friday. The Blue Devils, who were 6-3 in NEC action last
season, were picked behind defending champion Monmouth in the
poll. The Blue Devils open their season in one week, on Friday,
August 22 on the road at Hartford at 7 p.m.
FULL NEC RELEASE
Last season the Blue Devils finished 9-9-1 overall and 6-3 in the NEC advances to the NEC Tournament for the sixth straight season. They lost 2-1 to Sacred Heart in the semifinals. Their six straight appearances in the NEC Tournament is the second-longest streak in the league.
The Blue Devils return 18 players from last year's squad including nine of their top 10 scorers and all of their goalkeepers. Junior Rachel Caneen is the team's leading returning scorer and was an All-NEC first team selection a year ago. The Blue Devils had five All-NEC performers a year ago and four of those return for the 2008 season.
Head Coach Mick D'Arcy, entering his ninth season with CCSU, is the program's all-time winningest coach in both wins (88) and winning-percantage (.581). The Blue Devils have posted at least eight wins in six straight years and double-figure wins in four of the last six seasons.
Monmouth has been voted as the preseason favorite to win the championship, according to the poll of the league's head coaches. Receiving six first-place votes, the Hawks will look to capture their second straight title. CCSU finished second with one first-place vote, followed by last season's runner-up Long Island, which also claimed one first-place nod. Quinnipiac earned the fourth spot with two first-place votes, followed by Sacred Heart. Robert Morris edged out Saint Francis (PA) for sixth. Rounding out the field were Fairleigh Dickinson in eighth, followed by Mount St. Mary's and Wagner.
2008 Northeast Conference
Preseason Coaches Poll
1. Monmouth (6)
2. Central Connecticut State (1)
3. Long Island (1)
4. Quinnipiac (2)
5. Sacred Heart
6. Robert Morris
7. Saint Francis (PA)
8. Fairleigh Dickinson
9. Mount St. Mary's
First place votes in parentheses