RICHARDSON, Texas – With a total of 160 points, the LeTourneau University women’s soccer team has been picked to finish eighth in the 2017 American Southwest Conference after a vote of the league’s head coaches and sports information directors, the ASC office announced Thursday (Aug. 17). YellowJacket players Sarah Harder, Keely Hayden, and Kennedy Keer were all named to the players to watch list.
Hardin-Simmons (20-1-2 / 11-0 ASC) received 336 points to be picked to win the conference in the preseason poll and recorded 24 out of a possible 26 first-place votes. Reigning National Soccer Coaches Association of America West Region Coach of the Year Marcus Wood and the Cowgirls won their 14th consecutive ASC championship in 2016 and made their eighth appearance in NCAA Division III Championship third round. HSU was ranked eighth in the United Soccer Coaches Top 25 Preseason Poll. Led by Jones on offense, the Cowgirls led the nation in assists and ranked third in goals scored in 2016. The Cowgirls also led the country with 20 shutouts.
Following HSU was the University of Texas at Tyler (14-3-1 / 9-1-1 ASC) who came in second with 299 points in the preseason poll and picked up one first-place vote. The University of Mary Hardin-Baylor was selected third with 291 points followed by the University of Texas at Dallas (255 points, one first-place vote), East Texas Baptist (196 points), Sul Ross State (188 points) and Concordia Texas (180 points). Trailing LETU was Ozarks (117 points), Howard Payne (112 points), Belhaven (102 points), McMurry (72 points) and Louisiana College (39 points).
Selected as the ASC Offensive and Defensive Preseason Players of the Year, respectively, were HSU senior forward Kami Jones and senior defender Kristen Parrish.
Jones, from Comfort, Texas, was an NSCAA All-American First Team selection and the ASC Offensive Player of the Year after racking up 23 goals and 16 assists for 62 points. She ranked second in the nation in assist, third in points and seventh in goals in 2016.
Parrish, from Granbury, Texas, was a D3soccer.com Second Team All-American and the ASC Defensive Player of the Year. She recorded 11 goals and four assists and anchored the nation’s best defense that compiled 20 shutouts.
Thirty-nine student-athletes were named to the ASC Women’s Soccer Players to Watch List. The list is composed of up to three players from each institution nominated by the head coaches. Seventeen of the players submitted are returning all-conference selections including four award winners.
The 2017 season starts Friday (Sep 1) as 12 ASC teams take the field in their season opener.
The ASC Championship Tournament is Oct. 31, Nov. 3 and 5. The top four seeds with the semifinals and championship game at the overall No. 1 seed hosts the quarterfinals. An automatic berth into the NCAA Division III Women’s Soccer Championship will be on the line.
ASC Women’s Soccer Preseason Players of the Year
Offense: Kami Jones, Sr., F, Hardin-Simmons
Defense: Kirsten Parrish, Sr., D, Hardin-Simmons
ASC Women’s Soccer Preseason Poll
|Rank||Team||Pts.||2016 Record (ASC)|
|1.||Hardin-Simmons (24)||336||20-1-2 (11-0)|
|2.||UT Tyler (1)||299||14-3-1 (9-1-1)|
|3.||Mary Hardin-Baylor||291||13-4-2 (9-1-1)|
|4.||UT Dallas (1)||255||12-7-1 (7-3-1)|
|5.||East Texas Baptist||196||6-8-4 (4-5-2)|
|6.||Sul Ross State||188||6-9-1 (4-6-1)|
|7.||Concordia Texas||180||8-7-1 (6-5)|
|10.||Howard Payne||112||5-11-1 (3-7-1)|
|12.||McMurry %||72||1-16 (1-10)|
|13.||Louisiana College||39||0-15-2 (0-11)|
# Ineligible for 2017 ASC Championship / NCAA Championship (NCAA Div. III Provisional)
% Ineligible for 2017 ASC Championship / NCAA Championship (NCAA Div. III Reclassifying)
ASC Women’s Soccer Players to Watch List
2016 All-Conference Selection*
|Heather Brady||Sr.||M/F||East Texas Baptist|
|Kayla Carlove||So.||M||Concordia Texas|
|Haley Clark||Jr.||GK||Louisiana College|
|Rachel Crane||Sr.||F||Howard Payne|
|Lauren Ebbs*||Sr.||F||Sul Ross State|
|Ashlynn Folse||So.||F||Louisiana College|
|Nicole Goodwin*||Sr.||GK||Howard Payne|
|Chelsea Graham*||So.||F||Mary Hardin-Baylor|
|Claire Hamilton||So.||D||East Texas Baptist|
|Rachel Hamilton||Jr.||D||Sul Ross State|
|Laurel Hansen||Sr.||M||UT Dallas|
|Kaitlyn Harrison||Jr.||M||Howard Payne|
|Kathleen Johnson*||Jr.||M||UT Tyler|
|Alyssa Kolvitz||Jr.||D||UT Dallas|
|Skylar Larkin||Jr.||D||Concordia Texas|
|Madison Link*||Jr.||D||Mary Hardin-Baylor|
|Vanessa Rangel*||Jr.||M||UT Tyler|
|Sarah Rempe*||Sr.||M||Mary Hardin-Baylor|
|Ashlie Rojas||Sr.||GK||Sul Ross State|
|Abbey Sturdivant*||Jr.||D/M||East Texas Baptist|
|Megan Theros*||So.||D||UT Dallas|
|Jaime Trahan||Sr.||D||Louisiana College|
|Maria Paula Vela*||Jr.||M||Concordia Texas|
|Caroline Williams*||Sr.||D||UT Tyler|
Sports Information Director