Sun Belt Announces 2018 Women's Soccer Preseason Poll, All-Conference Honors (2018-08-11 14:24:03)

NEW ORLEANS - The South Alabama Jaguars, four-time Sun Belt women's soccer regular season and five-time tournament champions, were picked as the favorite to win the 2018 title as voted upon by the league's 11 head coaches.

USA compiled a 14-5-1 overall record a season ago with a 9-1 conference mark. The Jaguars clinched their fifth consecutive tournament title in dominating fashion, outscoring opponents 11-0 on their way to the crown. It was the second consecutive year South Alabama shut out all opponents in the tournament. In 2017, the Jaguars outscored opponents, 9-0, in the tournament.

The Jaguars earned 117 total points and seven first-place votes to earn top honors in the preseason coaches’ poll. Texas State was picked to finish second as the Bobcats tallied 97 points and four first-place votes. The Bobcats posted 10 wins overall with an 8-2-0 league mark.

The Troy Trojans were picked to finish third as they tallied a total of 92 points. Little Rock was selected fourth with 82 points. Coastal Carolina, received one first-place vote, and was tabbed fifth with 81 points.

USA’s Kory Dixon, a junior, was tabbed as the league's Preseason Offensive Player of the Year, while USA's Hannah Godfrey was chosen as the league's Preseason Defensive Player of the Year for the second consecutive season.

Dixon, a 2017 second-team All-Sun Belt selection, was second on the Jaguars squad and tied for tenth in the Sun Belt with five goals last season. She tallied 12 points on five goals and two assists in 2017 while starting 17 of the 20 matches played.

Godfrey, a first-team All-Sun Belt performer last season and the Defensive Player of the Year, started all 21 matches for the Jaguars and logged a team high 1,935 minutes. Godfrey was a vital member of a Jaguar defense that ranked second in the Sun Belt in goals against average (0.93) and shutouts (8). Godfrey and the Jaguars held 11 of 13 opponents to single-digit shots on the year and did not allow multiple goals in a school record 16 consecutive contests.

Nine of the 11 student-athletes on the preseason all-conference team were first or second team selections following the 2017 season.

The women’s soccer season begins on Friday, Aug. 19, with all 11 teams getting their campaigns started. The season will conclude on Oct. 21 with the conference tournament scheduled for Wednesday, Oct. 31 through Sunday, Nov. 4. The championship will be held at the Foley Sports Tourism Complex in Foley, Ala.

2018 Sun Belt Women’s Soccer Preseason All-Conference Team
Arola Aparicio Gili (Little Rock, Senior, Forward) *
Kory Dixon (South Alabama, Junior, Forward) **
Kaylee Davis (Texas State, Junior, Forward) *
Doro Greulich (Little Rock, Junior, Midfielder) *
Monique Hundley (Georgia State, Senior, Midfielder)
Jordan Kondikoff (Texas State, Junior, Midfielder) **
Liesa Seifert (Little Rock, Senior, Defender) **
Hannah Godfrey (South Alabama, Senior, Defender) *
Genesis Turman (Texas State, Junior, Defender)
Kelsey Ponder (Arkansas State, Senior, Goalkeeper) **
Heather Martin (Texas State, Junior, Goalkeeper) *

* Denotes 2017 All-Sun Belt First Team | ** Denotes 2017 All-Sun Belt Second Team

2018 Sun Belt Women’s Soccer Preseason Offensive Player of the Year
Kory Dixon (South Alabama, Junior, Forward)

2018 Sun Belt Women’s Soccer Preseason Defensive Player of the Year
Hannah Godfrey (South Alabama, Senior, Defender)

2018 Sun Belt Women’s Soccer Coaches’ Preseason Poll
first-place votes in parentheses
1. South Alabama (7) - 117 pts
2. Texas State (2) - 97 pts
3. Troy - 92 pts
4. Little Rock - 82 pts
5. Coastal Carolina (1) - 81 pts
6. Arkansas State (1) - 65 pts
6. Georgia Southern - 65 pts
8. Appalachian State - 42 pts
9. Georgia State - 33 pts
10. Louisiana - 29 pts
11. ULM - 23 pts


Mountaineers Suffer Setback in Exhibition at ETSU

BOONE, N.C. - Appalachian State University women's soccer suffered a 4-1 decision to ETSU in a road exhibition contest on Wednesday evening at Summers-Taylor Stadium. 

The weather played a factor delaying the contest to 7 p.m. before the Mountaineers and Buccaneers played three 30-minute periods. 

Freshman Kirsten Seeley (Manassas, Va./Forest Park), who was in her first contest against another collegiate program, highlighted the evening for the Mountaineers as she came off the bench to give the Apps their only score of the contest in the 55th minute of the match. Mary Perkins (Huntersville, N.C./Cox Park) collected the assist on Seeley's score. Four other student-athletes collected a shot on goal. Emmily Cowie (Davidson, N.C./W.A. Hough) and Ava Dawson (Greenville, N.C./DH Conley) fired off attempts at the net while Amber Anderson (Indian Trail, N.C./Sun Valley) and Lindsey Poff (Charlotte, N.C./Charlotte Catholic) each registered a SOG. 

Playing the full 90 minutes for App were Alexa Asher (Raleigh, N.C./Millbrook) and Jessica Easley (Waxhaw, N.C./Marvin Ridge). All three goalkeepers saw time between the posts with Taylor Ray (Indian Trail, N.C./Porter Ridge) playing 39:50 of the match. Lauren Burke (Mableton, Ga./Whitefield Academy) played 30 minutes and stopped three shots while Lilly Dunn (Cary, N.C./Green Hope) followed suit with 20:10 of action. 

Both teams got off their number of shots with a combined 31 attempts and 12 on goal. ETSU scored three of its first four goals in the first and second periods before tacking on a score in the final frame. EleonoraGoldoni, who was named to the Italian Senior National team, scored twice for the hosts to lead the offense. 

App State will return to action on Friday at 7 p.m. against Western Carolina at Ted Mackorell Soccer Complex. 

Taylor Ray GK
Amanda Sales D
Alexa Asher D
Jamie Palermo D
Ava Dawson MF
Jessica Easley F
Sarah Murphy D
Molly Niewald MF
Blair Anderes F
Emmily Cowie MF
Maggie Hanusek MF


Summerlin Takes Runner-Up at Carolinas Open

GREENSBORO, N.C. – Keeping up his fantastic summer of golf, Appalachian State rising junior Tripp Summerlin finished runner-up at this week's 94th Carolinas Open.
The Mountaineer from Summerfield, N.C., used three birdies in his last five holes to shoot even par in Thursday's gorgeous final round at Starmount Forest CC. He finished 8-under over the course of the three-round event, just three strokes back from winner Jerry Haas (-11), who is a PGA Pro and the head coach at Wake Forest University.
The Carolinas Open is the oldest professional golf tournament in the Carolinas. Since its inception in 1923 when the Carolinas PGA Section was founded in Greensboro, many of the best players from the area have competed. Past winners include Henry Picard, Bobby Locke, Johnny Palmer, Kelly Mitchum and last year's winner, Appalachian alum Josh Nichols. The three-round event is taking place at Starmount Forest CC this week.
Summerlin would have been just the 11th amateur to win the event since its creation and just the third amateur since 1984 had he come away with the victory. 
He also finished runner-up in the 62nd Eastern Amateur a few weeks ago,

Teammate and rising senior Alex Burris tied for 52nd place at 6-over.