Mesa men’s soccer team picked seventh, women’s team fifth in RMAC
A majority of the Colorado Mesa University men’s soccer team returns, but the Mavericks aren’t expected to go anywhere in the Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference standings.
CMU is picked to finish seventh again this season, picked one point behind CSU-Pueblo for the sixth and final spot in the RMAC coaches poll, which was released Wednesday.
Defending national champion Fort Lewis College is the clear favorite to win the RMAC title. The Skyhawks, ranked No. 1 in the National Soccer Coaches Association of America preseason rankings, received eight of the nine first-place votes.
Colorado School of Mines received one first-place vote and is picked to place second, led by the RMAC preseason player of the year, Tesho Akindele.
Regis is picked third, followed by Metro State, CU-Colorado Springs and CSU-Pueblo. Metro State’s Andrew Mejia is the preseason defender of the year.
No Mavs made the preseason all-conference team, which includes four foreign players.
Colorado Mesa has eight returning starters and several other returning players from last season.
The Mavericks open the season Sept. 1 against Cal State-San Bernardino in St. George, Utah.
Colorado Mesa also has a majority of its women’s soccer team returning, but it is picked to finish one spot lower than it did last season.
The Mavericks are picked fifth. They finished fourth in the RMAC last season and made the NCAA tournament.
Mesa has eight returning starters, including preseason all-conference selection Samantha Burneo, a junior defender.
Colorado School of Mines received six first-place votes and is favored to win the RMAC. The fifth-ranked Orediggers are led by preseason player of the year Megan Woodworth, a senior midfielder.
Regis received four first-place votes and is second in the preseason poll. The Rangers are led by preseason defensive player of the year Alison Cahill.
Fort Lewis is picked third and Metro State is fourth. New Mexico Highlands is the favorite to grab the sixth and final RMAC tournament spot.
The Mavericks open the season Aug. 31 against West Texas A&M in Wichita Falls, Texas.