Eagles voted 10th in this year's coaches poll
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The Eastern Washington women’s soccer team has been voted tenth in the Big Sky preseason coaches poll, which was released by the conference office on Wednesday (Aug. 6).
The Eagles received 27 votes this year ahead of
North Dakota by 15 votes and just behind Idaho by a narrow two
“I believe the Big Sky poll is an accurate reflection of where we have been as a program, not where we plan to go,” said Eastern's new head coach Chad Bodnar.
Leading this year’s poll is last year’s regular season champions, Portland State, with 93 votes, along with five first place votes. In a close second is Weber State, who is the previous year’s Big Sky Tournament champion, with 92 votes and another five first place votes. Northern Arizona follows closely behind Weber State and Portland State with 86 votes which is accompanied with a single first-place vote.
After the top three teams are Northern Colorado, Montana, Idaho State, Sacramento State and Southern Utah.
EWU is looking to improve on last year’s performance (3-15-0) and will be aided by 11 returning letter winners. Additionally, there are a large amount of newcomers to the team, including new head coach Chad Bodnar. Along with Bodnar this year is new assistant coach Max Weber, new goalkeeper coach Rich Cullen and 13 new players to the EWU roster.
Bodnar stated, “I’m very confident in the group we have returning in the fall, and the new faces who are here wanting to improve a program. We understand the amount of hard work being successful requires and are invested in this University, and this program, and believe strongly we can get better and make all of our Eagle supporters proud”.
Eastern finished 1-8 in the Big Sky, placing ninth overall in the league standings. The Eagles’ 2014 campaign starts with an exhibition match at Gonzaga on Thursday, Aug. 14, at 5 p.m.
School Number of Votes (First place votes in parenthesis)
1. Portland State 93 (5)
2. Weber State 92 (5)
3. Northern Arizona 86 (1)
4. Northern Colorado 69
5. Montana 62
6. Idaho State 52
7. Sacramento State 51
8. Southern Utah 32
9. Idaho 29
10. Eastern Washington 27
11. North Dakota 12