Stanford Tabbed 2016 Favorite by Women's Soccer Coaches

SAN FRANCISCO - STANFORD was voted by the league’s coaches to win the 2016 Pac-12 women’s soccer crown, the Conference office announced on Tuesday. The league coaches picked USC to finish second behind the Cardinal, followed by CALIFORNIA. Following are the results of the 2016 Pac-12 preseason coaches’ poll; coaches are not allowed to vote for their own teams (points: 11-10-9-8-7-6-5-4-3-2-1, first-place votes in parentheses). 

The Cardinal is coming off its eighth trip to the NCAA Tournament in 2015, winning its fifth Pac-12 title in the last seven years. The Cardinal was one of two Pac-12 teams standing in the NCAA Tournament round of 16, falling in penalty kicks to Duke. In the National Soccer Coaches Association of America (NSCAA) preseason rankings, Stanford is fifth overall. 

USC finished second in the Pac-12 Conference in 2015 with a record of 9-2. The Trojan squad earned a berth to the NCAA Tournament advancing to the round of 16, only the third USC team all-time to do so. USC is set to return all but two starters for the 2016 season and appears on the NSCAA preseason ranking coming in at 11th overall.

California earned its 12th-straight berth to the NCAA Tournament last year, the second-longest streak in the Pac-12. Junior Arielle Ship was the program’s first-ever Pac-12 Player of the Year after earring the honor last year. The Golden Bears appear are 18th in the NSCAA preseason poll.

UCLA returns a strong group of  seven seniors while  at the same time bringing in a freshman class of seven. The Bruins showed glimpses of dominance in 2015, beating three top-25 opponents, No. 13 Wisconsin, No.19 Pepperdine and No. 15 Arizona. 

ARIZONA weighed in at fifth in the Pac-12 coaches polling, while WASHINGTON was slated at sixth overall, with WASHINGTON STATE holding the seventh spot and ARIZONA STATE at eighth. UTAH is ninth, with COLORADO sitting in 10th, OREGON STATE and OREGON rounded out the poll at 11th and 12th, respectively. 

The 2016 Pac-12 women’s soccer season is set to kick off Aug. 19. Like last year, the league will receive unprecedented coverage with 68 games set to be televised live on the Pac-12 Networks. For more information, including a composite schedule, visit www.pac-12.com. 

2016 Pac-12 Women’s Soccer Coaches Poll

1. Stanford (6) 116
2. USC (4) 112
3. California  96
4. UCLA (2) 94
5. Arizona 70
6. Washington 68
7. Washington State 65
8. Arizona State 36
9. Utah 35
10. Colorado 31
11. Oregon State 28
12. Oregon 20
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