EUGENE, Ore. – The University of Oregon women’s soccer team was selected 11th in the Pac-12 Conference Preseason Coaches’ Poll, the conference office announced today. All 12 conference coaches participated in the poll.
The Ducks tallied 21 total points to better Arizona (15) by six. Oregon will be looking to exceed preseason conference expectations based on the coaches’ poll for a second consecutive season.
UCLA grabbed 7-of-11 possible first place votes and was selected as the favorite to win the conference title, while four-time defending Pac-12 champion Stanford was voted runner-up.
Five teams from the Pac-12, one of the strongest conferences in the nation, qualified for the Division I Women’s Soccer Tournament last season.
The Ducks return five of their top-six leading scorers from last season, including sophomore Kristen Parr, who led the team with seven goals. Oregon also returns goalkeeper Abby Steele, who currently has the lowest career goals against average (1.26) of goalkeepers who have played at least 35 games in program history.
First-year head coach Kat Mertz and Oregon will travel to UC Davis on Saturday for an exhibition, and will officially open the season at Pape’ Field on Friday, Aug. 23, against Portland State. The season opener will kickoff at 5 p.m. (PT).
2013 Pac-12 Women’s Soccer Coaches Poll
1. UCLA (7) 117
2. Stanford (5) 115
3. California 99
4. Washington 77
5. Arizona State 74
6. Oregon State 70
Washington State 70
8. USC 65
9. Utah 37
10. Colorado 27
11. Oregon 21
12. Arizona 15