RICHARDSON, Texas – The LeTourneau University men’s soccer team has been picked 11th in the 2017 American Southwest Conference men’s soccer preseason poll after a vote of the league’s head coaches and sports information directors, the ASC office announced Wednesday (Aug. 16). Miguel Cabrera, Alan Flores, and Israel Madrid were all named to the ASC players to watch list.
LETU picked up a total of 77 points while the University of Texas at Dallas has been picked to win the conference by taking a total of 276 points and 16 out of a possible 24 first-place votes. Following the Comets was Hardin-Simmons (240 points, two first-place votes), the University of Texas Tyler (236 points, four first-place votes), Mary Hardin-Baylor (225 points) and Concordia Texas (193 points) rounding out the top five. Ozarks picked up one first-place vote to be picked to finish sixth with 145 points followed by Belhaven (139 points), East Texas Baptist (131 points), McMurry (87 points), and Howard Payne (86 points). Louisiana College rounded out the poll in 12th after receiving one first-place vote and finishing with 37 points. McMurry and Belhaven are ineligible for the 2017 ASC Championship and NCAA Tournament this year due to NCAA Division III Reclassifying.
In other preseason honors, the University of Texas at Tyler senior midfielder Leo Cid-Fernandez and the University of Mary Hardin-Baylor junior defender Caleb Vandergriff were named the ASC Offensive and Defensive Preseason Players of the Year, respectively.
Cid-Fernandez is the reigning ASC Offensive Player of the Year and Midfielder of the Year. The Cordoba, Argentina product led the league with 31 points on 12 goals and seven assists. They also named Fernandez to the National Soccer Coaches Association of America All-West Region Second Team.
Vandergriff, from Georgetown, Texas, was an All-ASC First Team selection last year and was the Defensive Freshman of the Year in 2015. He started all 18 games for the Cru last season, recording a goal and an assist, and contributing to seven shutouts. Vandergriff was an NSCAA All-West Region First Team defender.
Thirty-five student-athletes were named to the ASC Men’s Soccer Players to Watch List. The list is composed of up to three players from each institution nominated by the head coaches. Sixteen of the 33 players submitted are returning all-conference selections, six of which were All-Region picks.
The 2017 season will get underway Friday, September 1 when 11 of the 12 members take the field for their season openers.
The ASC Championship is scheduled for November 3-5 and is the site of the men’s No. 1 seed. An automatic berth into the NCAA Division III Men’s Soccer Championship will be on the line.
ASC Men’s Soccer Preseason Players of the Year
Offense: Leo Cid-Fernandez, Sr., M, UT Tyler
Defense: Caleb Vandergriff, Jr., D, Mary Hardin-Baylor
ASC Men’s Soccer Preseason Poll
|Rank||Team (1st)||Pts.||2016 Record (ASC)|
|1.||UT Dallas (16)||276||13-5-2 (9-0-1)|
|2.||Hardin-Simmons (2)||240||9-4-3 (7-1-2)|
|3.||UT Tyler (4)||236||10-6-2 (4-5-1)|
|4.||Mary Hardin-Baylor||225||11-6-1 (7-2-1)|
|5.||Concordia Texas||193||13-4-1 (7-3)|
|6.||Ozarks (1)||145||10-6-3 (4-4-2)|
|8.||East Texas Baptist||131||9-9 (4-6)|
|10.||Howard Payne||86||3-9-3 (2-5-3)|
|12.||Louisiana College (1)||37||0-18 (0-10)|
# Ineligible for 2017 ASC Championship / NCAA Tournament (NCAA Div. III Provisional)
% Ineligible for 2017 ASC Championship / NCAA Tournament (NCAA Div. III Reclassifying)
ASC Men’s Soccer Players to Watch List
2016 All-Conference Selection*
|Caleb Almanza*||Sr.||M||Mary Hardin-Baylor|
|Travis Atkinson*||So.||D||East Texas Baptist|
|Eric Bigon*||Sr.||D||Concordia Texas|
|Roger Bonill||So.||M||Howard Payne|
|Ryan Brinda*||Jr.||D||UT Tyler|
|Jordan Burke||Sr.||D||East Texas Baptist|
|Case Carnes*||Sr.||F||Mary Hardin-Baylor|
|Nash Cole*||Jr.||D||Concorida Texas|
|Leo Cid-Fernandez*||M||Sr.||UT Tyler|
|Nathan Gautreaux||Sr.||GK||Louisiana College|
|Alfredo Kaegi*||So.||F||UT Dallas|
|Alejandro Labastida*||Sr.||F||Concordia Texas|
|Danny Meyer*||Sr.||F||UT Dallas|
|Tracer Moore||Sr.||F||Howard Payne|
|Lucas Periera*||Jr.||F||UT Tyler|
|Brad Rivenes||So.||D||UT Dallas|
|Daniel Rutter*||Jr.||M||East Texas Baptist|
|Todd Ryals||Sr.||D||Louisiana College|
|Collin Salyers||Jr.||D||Howard Payne|
|Phay San||So.||M||Louisiana College|
|Caleb Vandergriff*||Jr.||D||Mary Hardin-Baylor|
Sports Information Director