ROYAL OAK, Mich. – Women's soccer coaches in the Michigan Intercollegiate Athletic Association has chosen defending champion Calvin as the preseason favorite for the 2013 season.
The Knights, who won both the MIAA championship and conference tournament last season, received seven out of a possible nine first-place votes in the preseason poll. Alma, which was picked to finish second, and Saint Mary's, which was picked fourth, each received one first-place vote.
Hope was picked third in the poll, followed by Saint Mary's, Adrian, Kalamazoo, Olivet, Trine and Albion.
Poll Results (first-place votes in parenthesis): 1. Calvin (7) 9 pts. 2. Alma (1) 18. 3. Hope 25. 4. Saint Mary's (1) 28. 5. Adrian 31. 6. Kalamazoo 43. 7. Olivet 52. 8. Trine 58. 9. Albion 60.
MIAA teams will begin non-conference action Friday, Aug. 30, with the first conference games set for Monday, Sept. 9.
The Bulldogs have a lot of offensive firepower returning including Erin Weide, the reigning MIAA Player of the Year. Weide was also named First Team All-Region a season ago. Adrian will need to find a couple of key replacements for the departed goalkeeper Chayna Wallace and defender Patti Vaassen. Both were named First Team All-MIAA in 2012 and were also All-Region selections.
Head Coach Ali Alamdari has the ship pointed in the right direction having posted double-digit wins in every season he has been at AC. The Bulldogs get things underway on Aug. 30 as they travel to regional foe Illinois Wesleyan who went 9-9 last season. The two teams had their contest cancelled due to wet field conditions, so these teams are ready to get after it on the pitch to begin 2013.