Saxton, Hickcox and Roberts named to Preseason All-WAC Team.
BOISE, Idaho (8/5/2010) - The Western Athletic Conference released its 2010 preseason soccer poll this afternoon from its offices in Denver, Colo. Boise State was selected second in the annual coaches poll behind Utah State. In addition to the team poll, the conference released its Preseason All-WAC Team as well with three Broncos, Shannon Saxton, Brandy Hickcox and Lindsay Roberts, among the 11 student-athletes honored by the league’s coaches.
Boise State is picked to battle it out with Utah State for the regular-season title this fall. The Aggies edged out the Broncos by one point for the top spot in the coaches poll earning three first-place votes and a total of 59 points compared to Boise State’s six first-place votes and a total of 58 points. This marks the highest preseason ranking ever for the Bronco soccer team who’s previous best was fourth, accomplished four times in 2002, 2005, 2008 and 2009.
Boise State set a school record for wins last season going 13-7-4 overall and went 5-3 in league play to tie for third-place in the final conference standings. The Broncos then rolled off three-consecutive victories at the WAC Tournament in Boise to claim their first ever conference title to earn an automatic bid into the NCAA Tournament.
Following Utah State and Boise State in the coaches’ poll was last season’s regular season champion, San Jose State, who received 40 points to place third. Nevada was selected fourth with 36 points. Fresno State was picked fifth with 35 points, followed by Hawai‘i (30 points) at sixth place, Idaho (28 points) and New Mexico State (26 points) were voted in the seventh and eighth spots, respectively. Louisiana Tech, which hosts this seasons WAC Tournament, was selected ninth with 12 points.
Shannon Saxton led the group of three Broncos recognized by the WAC coaches. The senior forward earned a program record third-straight preseason award. The senior owns 27 different Boise State records and looks to claim the all-time career goals record this fall needing two to set the mark.
Joining Saxton were juniors Brandy Hickcox and Lindsay Roberts. Hickcox as been a main stay at center midfield since arriving to campus, while Roberts has anchored the Boise State defensive line at center back. All three Broncos were All-WAC honorees last fall.
Utah State junior forward Shantel Flanary garnered the WAC Preseason Offensive Player of the Year honor, while San Jose State junior defender Jessica Ingram was selected as the WAC Preseason Defensive Player of the Year.
The 2010 WAC season is set to kickoff the weekend of Aug. 20-22 with all nine teams in action. The WAC Soccer Tournament heads to Lady Techster Soccer Field in Ruston, La., after playing the 2009 Championship in Boise. The six-team tournament will be held November 4-7.
2010 Coaches’ Poll
Team (1st place votes) Points
1. Utah State (3) 59
2. Boise State (6) 58
3. San Jose State 40
4. Nevada 36
5. Fresno State 35
6. Hawai‘i 30
7. Idaho 28
8. New Mexico State 26
9. Louisiana Tech 12
2010 Preseason All-WAC Team
Shannon Saxton, Sr., F, Boise State
Chelsea Small, So., F, Idaho
Natalie Ratnavira, Jr., F, Nevada
Shantel Flanary, Jr., F, Utah State
Brandy Hickcox, Jr., MF, Boise State
Mari Punzal, Sr., MF, Hawai‘i
Jill Erickson, Sr., MF, Nevada
Lindsay Roberts, Jr., D, Boise State
Kendall VanDine, Jr., D, Fresno State
Jessica Ingram, Jr., D, San Jose State
Kaitlyn Revel, Sr., GK, Fresno State
Preseason Players of the Year
Offensive: Shantel Flanary, Jr., F, Utah State
Defensive: Jessica Ingram, Jr., D, San Jose State