SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KWSN) – The University of Sioux Falls women’s soccer team was voted to finish 16th in the 2014 Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference Soccer Preseason Coaches’ poll, announced Tuesday by the conference office. The Cougars finished their second season in the NSIC with a 2-12-1 record in conference play and an overall record of 2-15-1.
Minnesota State was tabbed to win the NSIC with 214 points as they try to claim their third straight conference title. The Mavericks received 7 first place votes and were followed closely by Minnesota Duluth who tallied 206 points with 6 first place votes. Winona State and Southwest Minnesota State were the final two schools to receive first place votes as the Warriors picked up two while the Mustangs received one.
Despite being picked to finish last in the 2013 Preseason NSIC Soccer Coaches Poll, the Cougars finished tied for 14th place thanks to a pair of victories and a tie to give USF seven points on the year.
The Cougars will return ten players from the 2013 squad, and will rely heavily on seven newcomers to the Cougars roster.
Senior Tionne Webb was named as the USF “Defensive Player to Watch” for the 2014 season. The Colorado Springs, Colorado native recorded 1257 minutes last season while also recording one goal and one assist. Webb also had five shots on goal and recorded a team high SOG% of 0.714.
For the second season in a row, Ciara Howerton was named as USF’s “Offensive Player to Watch.” Howerton saw action in each of the Cougars 17 games during the 2013 season, notching fifteen starts in that time. She also is the most veteran player returning from last year’s squad as she logged 1484 minutes. Howerton helped the Cougars in their two wins last season as she recorded game winning goals in USF’s victories over Minnesota Crookston and Minnesota State Moorhead.
The Cougars will begin the 2014 season with three non-conference matchups before opening conference play. USF will compete in their home opener on September 5th when they host Nebraska-Kearney at the USF Complex with the match set to start at 6 p.m.
The 2014 NSIC Soccer Regular Season Champion will be determined by a 15-game league schedule, with a win earning a team three points and a tie one point.
Courtesy: University of Sioux Falls