By Alan Grosbach, Manager of Communications and Sports Information
KANSAS CITY, Mo – Fueled by a four-match winning streak, Lindsey Wilson (Ky.) holds the No. 1 distinction for the fifth-straight NAIA Women’s Soccer Coaches’ Top 25 Poll, the national office announced Tuesday. The Blue Raiders gathered 15-of-21 first-place votes and 586 points en route to their NAIA-best 46th all-time No. 1 ranking dating back to 1999.
With a 7-1-0 record, Lindsey Wilson has won 12 of its last 13 matches dating back to last season. The Blue Raiders opened Mid-South Conference action last week with a 5-1 victory at Campbellsville (Ky.) on Sept. 18 and a 6-0 win against Rio Grande (Ohio) on Sept. 21. Lindsey Wilson, who has outscored its opponents 27-5 this season, returns to the pitch Thursday against NCAA Division II Lee (Tenn.) before returning to conference play Saturday at Shawnee State (Ohio).
Embry-Riddle (Fla.), the only team to shuffle positions within the top 11, slides up one spot to tie Vanguard at No. 2 as both sides tallied 564 points. The Eagles, who received the remaining six first-place votes, are 5-1-1 this season and were idle this past week. Embry-Riddle opens The Sun Conference portion of its schedule Thursday against Webber International (Fla.).
For Vanguard, this is the third-straight week the Lions have been listed at No. 2. Vanguard improved to 6-0-0 on the year after a dominating 11-0 win against NCCAA Bethesda (Calif.). The Lions have one remaining non-conference match – at Soka (Calif.) on Friday – before opening Golden State Athletic Conference (GSAC) action against No. 6 Westmont (Calif.) on Oct. 1.
Rounding out the top five for the second-straight week are No. 4 Concordia (Ore.) and No. 5 Northwood (Fla.) with 536 and 512 points, respectively. The Cavaliers successfully rebounded from their Sept. 15 loss at Embry-Riddle (Fla.) with a pair of shutout victories against Carroll (Mont.), 2-0, and NCCAA Trinity Lutheran (Wash.), 4-0, last week to improve to 6-1-1. Northwood was inactive.
Within the poll, No. 18 Concordia (Calif.) made the largest improvement, vaulting up seven places, while former No. 15 Cal State San Marcos fell six spots to No. 21.
Five newcomers joined the Top 25 this week – No. 20 Brenau (Ga.), No. 22 Texas Wesleyan, No. 23 SCAD Savannah (Ga.), No. 24 Biola (Calif.) and No. 25 Baker (Kan.). Brenau, SCAD Savannah and Biola were all listed among the receiving votes teams in the second edition, while Texas Wesleyan and Baker were not ranked. Both Baker and Brenau were ranked earlier this season.
Biola, aided by a four-match winning streak that includes a 1-0 win over then-No. 15 Cal State San Marcos, returns to the Top 25 for the first time since Sept. 21, 2006. The Eagles are 5-2-0 this season and have a week off before traveling to No. 18 Concordia on Oct. 5.
Similarly to Biola, both Texas Wesleyan and SCAD Savannah break long stretches without a mention in the Coaches’ Poll. The Rams were last ranked No. 22 on Sept. 15, 2009, while SCAD Savannah claimed the No. 24 spot on Oct. 25, 2011.
For the first time since Sept. 28, 2010 – a string of 36-straight polls – Oklahoma City and Mobile are not present among the Top 25. The Stars, who were ranked as high as No. 8 this season, fell to 4-3-0 with a loss against Our Lady of the Lake (Texas), 2-1, last Saturday. Mobile enters the week with a 3-5-1 record and has lost four of its last five matches.
Benedictine (Kan.) (No. 22), Hastings (Neb.) (No. 23) and Kansas Wesleyan (No. 24) also drop out of the poll.
Twelve conferences/independent/unaffiliated groups are represented throughout the Top 25, led by five programs from the GSAC – Vanguard, Westmont, No. 13 The Master’s (Calif.), Concordia (Calif.) and Biola (Calif.). The Sun Conference is second with four schools.
The poll was voted upon by a panel of head coaches representing each of the conferences/independent/unaffiliated groups. For the complete women’s soccer ratings calendar, click here.
Notes: (All information dates back to 1999) Lindsey Wilson (Ky.) claims its fifth-straight and NAIA-best 46th all-time No. 1 ranking … The Blue Raiders own the longest active streak of consecutive appearances in the Top 25 with 153-consecutive mentions, including a string of 123-straight top 10 rankings … No. 4 Concordia owns the second longest active streak at 133-straight polls … Former NAIA member Azusa Pacific (Calif.) boasts the second-most No. 1’s with 33, followed by Westmont (Calif.) (19), Concordia (Ore.) (16) and former member Lee (Tenn.) (16) … Overall, 11 different programs have claimed the No. 1 spot in the poll … Davenport’s (Mich.) No. 7 ranking is the highest in program history … Oklahoma City and Mobile (Ala.) fall out of the Top 25 for the first time since Sept. 28, 2012 – a string of 36-straight appearances … For the third-straight week, the Golden State Athletic Conference boasts the most ranked programs with four … Twelve of the 21 conferences/independents/unaffiliated groups are represented in the third regular-season Top 25 … Thirty-two teams have been ranked through three polls in 2013.
2013 NAIA Women’s Soccer Coaches’ Top 25 Poll – No. 3 (Sept. 24)
|RANK||LAST TIME||SCHOOL (1ST PLACE VOTES)||2013 RECORD||TOTAL POINTS|
|1||1||Lindsey Wilson (Ky.) (15)||7-1-0||586|
|T2||3||Embry-Riddle (Fla.) (6)||5-1-1||564|
|8||8||Olivet Nazarene (Ill.)||4-2-0||442|
|9||9||Spring Arbor (Mich.)||7-2-1||438|
|10||10||Martin Methodist (Tenn.)||5-1-0||422|
|12||13||William Carey (Miss.)||5-4-0||381|
|13||16||The Master’s (Calif.)||8-0-0||367|
|14||14||Texas at Brownsville||5-2-0||356|
|17||19||St. Thomas (Fla.)||5-0-1||283|
|21||15||Cal State San Marcos||4-2-1||214|
|23||RV||SCAD Savannah (Ga.)||4-3-0||121|
Others Receiving Votes: Auburn Montgomery (Ala.) 82; Oklahoma City 69; Rocky Mountain (Mont.) 55; Grand View (Iowa) 52; Kansas Wesleyan 51; Robert Morris (Ill.) 42; Mobile (Ala.) 42; Missouri Valley 34; Hastings (Neb.) 26; Grace (Ind.) 26; Embry-Riddle (Ariz.) 23; Columbia (Mo.) 11; Avila (Mo.) 10; Our Lady of the Lake (Texas) 9; Reinhardt (Ga.) 9; Thomas (Ga.) 8; Georgia Gwinnett 7; Morningside (Iowa) 6; Westminster (Utah) 4; Southern Oregon 3.