Stanford named Men’s Soccer preseason Pac-12 favorite

SAN FRANCISCO – STANFORD, the nation’s preseason No. 1 ranked team, has been picked to win the 2017 Pac-12 men’s soccer title in a vote of the Conference’s head coaches, it was announced by the league office today. The two-time defending NCAA champion and three-time defending Pac-12 Champion Cardinal edged rival UCLA to snap the Bruins seven-year reign as preseason league favorite.

Stanford received four of the six first-place votes and totaled 24 points to top the preseason Pac-12 poll. The Cardinal, which tabbed No. 1 in the United Soccer Coaches preseason national poll on Aug. 3, became the first program to repeat as NCAA College Cup Champion since 2004 and will now seek to join Virginia (1991-94) as the only programs to win three consecutive national championships. The Cardinal return 2016 Co-Pac-12 Player of the Year senior Foster Langsdorf and Pac-12 Defensive Player of the Year senior Tomas Hilliard-Arce, as well as Pac-12 Coach of the Year Jeremy Gunn.

UCLA, ranked No. 21 in the national preseason ranking, received one first place vote and amassed 22 points to slot second in the Pac-12. The Bruins look to continue their streak of 34-consecutive trips to the postseason as senior Brian Iloski, a Second Team All-Pac-12 recipient, and preseason All-Pac-12 pick junior Erik Holt, lead the team into the 2017 season.

WASHINGTON, No. 11 in the Preseason United Soccer Coaches rankings, received the final first-place vote and totaled 19 points to place third in the Pac-12 poll. The Huskies have a history of excellence, making 23 trips to the postseason, including four appearances under seventh-year head coach Jamie Clark. UW made it to the third round of the NCAA Tournament last season and looks to make a second-straight appearance; led by preseason All-Pac-12 selections junior Kyle Coffee and sophomore Handwalla Bwana, the 2016 Pac-12 Freshman of the Year.

SAN DIEGO STATE tallied 10 points to place fourth with two Aztecs earning preseason All-Pac-12 honors - senior Adam Allmaras and sophomore Pablo Pelaez. OREGON STATE finished with eight points for fifth, just ahead of CALIFORNIA, which tallied seven points.

In addition to the poll, the Pac-12 announced the preseason All-Pac-12 team as voted on by the Conference coaches. The 11 member preseason list includes 10 field players and a goalkeeper, and features six 2016 all-Conference honorees.

All six Pac-12 men’s soccer teams kick off the 2016 season on Aug. 25-26. This season, Pac-12 Networks airs 33 broadcasts, including 24 Conference matches. For more information and to view the 2017 schedule, visit www.pac-12.com.

2017 Pac-12 Men’s Soccer Coaches Poll (Parentheses indicate first-place votes)

1 Stanford (4) 24
2 UCLA (1) 22
3 Washington (1) 19
4 San Diego State 10
5 Oregon State 8
6 California 7

2017 PRESEASON MEN’S SOCCER ALL-PAC-12 TEAM

NAME SCHOOL POS. YR. HOMETOWN
Adam Allmaras SDSU GK SR San Diego, Calif.
Corey Baird STAN F/MF SR Escondido, Calif.
Handwalla Bwana WASH MF SO Seattle, Wash.
Jose Carrera-Garcia CAL MF SR Ontario, Calif.
Kyle Coffee WASH F JR Syracuse, Utah
Tomas Hilliard-Arce STAN D SR Matthews, N.C.
Erik Holt UCLA D JR San Diego, Calif.
Foster Langsdorf STAN F SR Vancouver, Wash.
Timmy Mueller OSU F SR Post Falls, Idaho
Pablo Pelaez SDSU MF SO San Diego, Calif.
Drew Skundrich STAN MF SR Lancaster, Penn.
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