(Photo by BYU Photo/Jaren Wilkey)
PROVO, Utah – BYU women’s soccer begins the season ranked 19th in the nation in the NSCAA coaches preseason poll. The Cougars finished last year ranked 22nd, but return nine starters and are defending three-straight West Coast Conference championships.
Three of BYU’s opponents are in the top 25, while three more are receiving votes. The Cougars’ first two opponents are ranked as California is 18th and Stanford is third. The Golden Bears will open the season against BYU in Hawaii after finishing fifth in the Pac-12 and losing in the second round of the NCAA tournament.
The Cardinal received one first place vote a year after losing to eventual national champion Florida State in the semifinal. They will be the first top five team BYU will face since beating Portland 1-0 in 2013.
Pepperdine is ranked 10th after beating North Carolina and making it to the Sweet 16 of the NCAA tournament.
WCC rival Santa Clara and exhibition opponent Arizona each received votes in the inaugural poll of the season. As did Colorado, who has eliminated the Cougars from the NCAA tournament the past two years.
The season begins for BYU with the Blue/White scrimmage on Tuesday Aug. 11 at 7 p.m. on South Field. Admission is free.
For the full rankings, visit NSCAA.com.