Women's soccer picked third in WAC preseason poll

Picked to finish third, the Spartans
look for a hair-raising 2005
WAC season.
Denver, Colo. – The San Jose State University women’s soccer team has been picked to finish third in the Western Athletic Conference in 2005, in a preseason poll conducted by league head coaches.

The Spartans, who registered 35 points, finished eighth out of nine teams in the conference in 2004, in head coach Dave Siracusa’s first season at the helm. San Jose State posted a record of 5-13-1 overall and 2-5-1 in WAC play. Senior goalkeeper Adrienne Herbst, along with sophomores Nicole Irwin, Kristin Krale, Jackie Zabek and Tasha Van Dixhorn, are top returners.

"Considering where we finished last season, that’s pretty good," said Siracusa. "It’s nice that people think we showed improvement last year. I’m thrilled for the girls. This is an indication that the perception of the program is getting better. You still have to go out and play the games, but this makes it exciting."

Hawai’i was picked in the poll to win its second WAC crown. The Rainbow Wahine return six starters and 15 letterwinners, including the 2002 and 2003 WAC Player of the Year, senior Natasha Kai. Hawai‘i earned 49 points, grabbing seven first-place votes. Fresno State, with nine returning starters, was picked second with 43 points including one first-place vote.

Following San Jose State in fourth is Boise State with 28 points. Rounding out the field are Nevada, Utah State, Idaho and Louisiana Tech.

With the addition of Idaho, Louisiana Tech and Utah State, and the departure of Rice, SMU, UTEP and Tulsa, the WAC will continue its regular-season play as a single round-robin format for a total of eight conference matches, but will add in a points system. Each team will receive three points for a win and one point for a tie. The six teams with the most points will advance to the WAC Tournament.

San Jose State opens the 2005 regular season with a non-conference home contest against UC Irvine on Friday, August 26, at Spartan Stadium. Kickoff is set for 7:30 PM.

2005 WAC Women’s Soccer Coaches’ Preseason Poll
Team - Points
1. Hawai‘i - 49 (7)
2. Fresno State - 43 (1)
3. San Jose State - 35
4. Boise State - 28
5. Nevada - 26
6. Utah State - 19
7. Idaho - 17
8. Louisiana Tech 7