ACU picked to finish second in WAC Southwest Division in women’s soccer

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DENVER – Following a short offseason and an influx of new programs, Stephen F. Austin is the preseason favorite to win the 2021 Western Athletic Conference Southwest Division while Utah Valley is the coaches’ pick to win the WAC West Division. Individually, Seattle U’s Sydney Carr and UVU’s Jenna Shephard were selected as the WAC Preseason Offensive and Defensive Player of the Year respectively in a vote of the league’s 12 head coaches, who could not vote for their own team or players.

WAC-newcomer Stephen F. Austin received three first place votes to edge out Abilene Christian and Lamar for the top spot with 22 points, compared with two first place votes and 18 points for the Wildcats and one first place vote and 18 points for the Cardinals. UT Rio Grande Valley was picked fourth, followed by Sam Houston in fifth and Chicago State in sixth.

In the west, defending WAC champion Utah Valley received four first place votes and 24 total points to edge out rival Seattle U for the first spot. The Redhawks received one first place vote and 21 points to take second, followed by Grand Canyon, with the final first place vote and 17 points, in third. California Baptist takes fourth, NM State is fifth and Dixie State is sixth.

Carr represented the Redhawks on the Preseason All-WAC team whole Shephard was joined by teammates Sadie Brockback, Heather Stainbrook and Amber Tripp. California Baptist had two players honored as Erin Gallagher and Romy Salvador represented the Lancers. Also earning honors were Abilene Christian’s Christina Arteaga, Dixie State’s Whitley Griffiths, Grand Canyon’s Marleen Schimmer and Stephen F. Austin’s Jamie Jezierski.

2021 Preseason Southwest Division Poll
Rank Team (1st Place Votes) Points

  1. Stephen F. Austin (3) 22
    T2. Abilene Christian (2) 18
    T2. Lamar (1) 18
  2. UT Rio Grande Valley 16
  3. Sam Houston 11
  4. Chicago State 5

2021 Preseason West Division Poll
Rank Team (1st Place Votes) Points

  1. Utah Valley (4) 24
  2. Seattle U (1) 21
  3. Grand Canyon (1) 17
  4. California Baptist 14
  5. NM State 8
  6. Dixie State 6

2021 Preseason All-WAC Team
Christina Arteaga, Sr., F, Abilene Christian
Sadie Brockbank, Jr., F, Utah Valley
Sydney Carr, Sr., F, Seattle U
Whitley Griffiths, Sr., F, Dixie State
Marleen Schimmer, Sr., MF, Grand Canyon
Heather Stainbrook, So., MF, Utah Valley
Amber Tripp, Sr., MF, Utah Valley
Erin Gallagher, Jr., D, California Baptist
Jamie Jezierski, So., D, Stephen F. Austin
Jenna Shephard, So., D, Utah Valley
Romy Salvador, Sr., GK, California Baptist

Preseason Offensive Player of the Year: Sydney Carr, Seattle U
Preseason Defensive Player of the Year: Jenna Shephard, Utah Valley

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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