Gauchos, Anteaters Selected To Soccer America Preseason Top 25
The Soccer America preseason Top 25 rankings came out Wednesday and UC Santa Barbara was tabbed No. 4. The publication also pegged UC Irvine at No. 25.
The Gauchos received their highest preseason ranking as College Soccer News rated them No. 9 and NSCAA/Continental Tire No. 11. UCSB is coming off a 15-7-1 season and a 10th straight appearance in the NCAA Tournament. The Gauchos reached the Sweet 16 for the sixth time during that span. Six starters return from that squad, including 2011 All-Big West Honorable Mention selections Dom Sarle, Josue Madueno and Peter Schmetz.
UCSB also brings in highly regarded transfer Dion Acoff from Creighton to pair with other newcomers Goffin Boyoko, Achille Campion and Ema Boateng to bolster a revamped Gaucho offensive attack.
The Anteaters appeared at No. 13 and No. 15 in the NSCAA/Continental Tire and College Soccer News preseason polls, respectively. The defending Big West regular season and tournament champions earned an NCAA Tournament national seed for the third time in the last four years and finished the 2011 campaign with a school record 16 victories. UCI is led by the only returning member of the All-Big West First Team in senior defender Everett Pitts.
To view the entire Soccer America Top 25 preseason poll, please click here.