Women's Soccer Picked to Win Third Straight Big Sky Title

Women's Soccer Picked to Win Third Straight Big Sky Title


OGDEN, Utah - The Big Sky Conference coaches have selected Northern Arizona as the favorite to win the 2010 soccer championship, the conference announced Thursday. The two-time defending conference champions return 10 starters and 17 letterwinners in 2010, with eight seniors poised to lead the Lumberjacks to a third straight trip to the NCAA Tournament. NAU also returns seven All-Big Sky selections and welcomes 10 newcomers for the 2010 campaign.

Of the eight head coaches in the league, six gave their first-place vote to the Lumberjacks, for a total of 48 points. Coaches were not allowed to vote for their own team. Sacramento State finished second in the poll, collecting one first-place vote and 38 total points.

Portland State, last season's regular season champion, finished third in the voting with 36 points and one first-place vote. Weber State, Idaho State, Eastern Washington, Montana, and Northern Colorado round out the poll. Both Idaho State and Eastern Washington were conference tournament participants in 2009.

The Lumberjacks open their season with an exhibition match on Saturday at 5 p.m. at Embry-Riddle. NAU will host Arizona State next Friday, August 20, at 4 p.m. to begin the regular season.

The first conference matches are slated for Oct. 7. The top four teams from the regular season will advance to the Big Sky Championship Nov. 4 & 7 at the site of the regular-season champion.

2010 Big Sky Soccer

Preseason Coaches’ Poll Results


School (First-Place Votes)       Points

1. Northern Arizona (6)              48

2. Sacramento State (1)              38

3. Portland State (1)                    36

4. Weber State                            30

5. Idaho State                              27

6. Eastern Washington             16

7. Montana                                 15

8. Northern Colorado                14


DID YOU KNOW...Northern Arizona swimming and diving has been recognized by the College Swimming Coaches Association of America (CSCAA) for its academic excellence in the classroom. The women earned the Division I Team Scholar All-American award for the fifth time under head coach Andy Johns in 2010.