BOSTON – With less than a week before the Huskies report for preseason camp, the Northeastern men's soccer team was picked to finish first in the 2013 CAA preseason poll, which was released by the league on Friday.
The Huskies claimed the top spot in the poll after receiving three first-place votes and 44 total points. Drexel also got three first-place votes and finished second with 41 points. James Madison picked up one first-place tally and was third with 36 points, while Hofstra also got a first-place vote and was right behind with 35 points. UNCW was fifth in the balloting, followed by William & Mary, College of Charleston and Delaware.
This marks the first time that the Huskies have been slotted for the top spot since Northeastern joined the CAA in 2005, and only the second time that any NU sport was picked as the favorite, joining volleyball in 2012.
Northeastern is coming off a 14-3-4 season that saw the Huskies capture their first-ever conference tournament championship and reach the NCAA tournament for the first time since 2002. During the 2012 slate, NU set program records for most wins, fewest losses and longest unbeaten streak (12) while tying the team record for longest winning streak (six).
Led by CAA Co-Coach of the Year Brian Ainscough, Northeastern also went unbeaten at home for the second straight season (8-0-1), and has not lost at Parsons Field since Nov. 6, 2010, going 15-0-1 in that span. NU also cracked the national polls for the first time in team history, entering the NSCAA poll at No. 25.
The Huskies return five of their six top scorers from a year ago, led by junior tri-captain Donovan Fayd'Herbe de Maudave, who posted five goals and four assists in 2012. He will be joined by fellow captains Dante Marini (one goal, five assists) and CAA Defensive Player of the Year Simon Cox (four goals).
The trio will lead a Huskies team that returns 15 letterwinners, including eight starters, from last season's squad. NU also welcomes 10 freshmen to the 2013 team, the most of any team in the conference.
Following exhibition contests at Boston College (Aug. 18) and against New Hampshire (Aug. 24), the Huskies will open the 2013 regular season at the John Rennie / Nike Invitational against future league foe Elon on Aug. 30 at 5 p.m.
2013 CAA Men's Soccer Preseason Coaches Poll
|Place||Team||Points (First Place Votes)|
|3.||James Madison||36 (1)|
|6.||William & Mary||20|
|7.||College of Charleston||16|
Northeastern's previous rankings in the CAA preseason poll:
|Year||Place||Points (First Place Votes)|