Men's Soccer Picked Fourth In Pac-10 Preseason Poll

Aug. 13, 2009

WALNUT CREEK, Calif. - The Washington men's soccer team was picked to finish fourth in the Pac-10 conference in a vote of league coaches, the conference announced on Thursday.

The Huskies finished fourth in the conference last season with a 3-5-2 record but return eight starters this season, including leading goal scorer Brent Richards along with three All-Pac-10 defenders in Casey Cunningham, Taylor Hoss and Taylor Mueller.

Just two points separate the top two teams in the preseason coaches poll with California tabbed as the favorite to win the conference. This marks the second-straight year Cal has been picked top in the polls, with UCLA winning the vote from 2003-2007.

The Golden Bears, who tallied 24 points and four first-place votes, are coming off a season in which they finished second in the Pac-10 with a 5-2-3 record and 12-4-5 record overall. Last season, they advanced to the third round of the NCAA Tournament, where they fell 2-1 to eventual national champion Maryland.

Five-time and defending Pac-10 Champion UCLA picked up 22 points and two first-place votes to take second place in the preseason poll by only two points. The Bruins, who went 7-1-2 in Conference play last season, earned their 26th-consecutive trip to the NCAA Tournament.

Stanford placed third in the poll after finishing sixth in the Pac-10 in 2008 with a 2-6-2 record in Conference play and posting a 4-11-3 record overall. Washington was picked fourth with 12 points and San Diego State followed with nine points and Oregon State picked up eight points to come in fifth and sixth, respectively.

The 2009 Pac-10 men's soccer season kicks off on Tues., Sept. 1, as San Diego State, Stanford and Washington all take the field. The Huskies first regular season game takes place on the 1st at 3:30 p.m. when they play at Seattle U. They will play home exhibition games on Aug. 19 against the Seattle Wolves at 7 p.m. and Aug. 25 against Trinity Western at 4 p.m.

UW's first regular season home game comes on Sept. 17 at 7 p.m. against Portland.

Below are the results of the preseason coaches' poll. Coaches are not allowed to vote for their own teams (points 5-4-3-2-1, first place votes in parentheses).

2009 Pac-10 Men's Soccer Preseason Coaches Poll
1. California (4), 24
2. UCLA (2), 22
3. Stanford, 15
4. Washington, 12
5. San Diego State, 9
6. Oregon State, 8

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