By Alan Grosbach, Manager of Communications and Sports Information
KANSAS CITY, Mo. – Propelled by a streak of three-straight shutout victories, Concordia (Ore.) held down the No. 1 ranking for the second-consecutive week in the NAIA Women’s Soccer Coaches’ Top 25 Poll, the national office announced Tuesday. The Cavaliers tallied 20-of-21 first-place votes and 591 points en route to earning their 18th all-time No. 1 rankings dating back to 1999.
Concordia clinched a first-round bye in the upcoming Cascade Collegiate Conference (CCC) tournament with a 2-0 victory over defending CCC regular-season champion Northwest (Wash.) on Oct. 26. The Cavaliers, who are currently 7-0-0 in the CCC, have a chance to secure the top seed in the conference tournament Thursday at Northwest Christian (Ore.).
Northwood (Fla.) retained the No. 2 ranking for a second-straight week with 571 points. The Seahawks – now 13-1-1 on the season – capped an unbeaten The Sun Conference (TSC) schedule with a 2-0 win against Johnson & Wales (Fla.) on Oct. 24. Northwood’s next match will be the second annual TSC North-South game, which decides the conference’s regular-season champion, against No. 4 Embry-Riddle (Fla.) on Nov. 6.
No. 3 Westmont (Calif.) holds its ground for the third-straight week with one first-place vote and 548 points. The 12-0-3 Warriors are currently in second-place in the Golden State Athletic Conference standings with a 6-0-2 record and 20 points – two points shy of conference leader No. 8 Concordia (Calif.). Westmont rounds out its regular-season with home matches against Hope International on Tuesday and No. 10 Vanguard (Calif.) on Saturday.
Embry-Riddle and No. 5 Lindsey Wilson (Ky.) round out the top five with 539 and 515 points, respectively. The Eagles closed regular-season play with a 4-2 win over then-No. 22 Thomas (Ga.) last Saturday to improve to 13-2-1 overall and 8-1-0 in conference play. Lindsey Wilson successfully rebounded from its 1-0 loss at No. 6 Cumberland (Tenn.) with back-to-back wins against Pikeville (Ky.), 5-1, on Oct. 19 and Georgetown (Ky.), 8-0, on Oct. 22. The Blue Raiders have two contests remaining, including a non-conference tilt at No. 16 Martin Methodist (Tenn.) on Tuesday.
Within this week’s Top 25, No. 13 Brenau (Ga.) made the largest jump, moving up four places following a 4-0 win against then-No. 12 Martin Methodist in the NAIA Women’s Soccer Match of the Week last Saturday. Conversely, Martin Methodist, No. 11 Davenport (Mich.) and Vanguard fell four positions each to highlight the negative movement within the poll.
There were two newcomers to the Top 25 this week – No. 18 Robert Morris (Ill.) and No. 25 Benedictine (Kan.). Both Benedictine, who won the Heart of America Athletic Conference regular-season championship with a 1-0 win against MidAmerica Nazarene (Kan.) on Oct. 27, and Robert Morris were ranked earlier this season.
Avila (Mo.) (No. 18) and Thomas (No. 22) dropped out this week.
Thirteen conferences/independent/unaffiliated groups are represented throughout the Top 25, led by four programs from the GSAC – Westmont, Concordia, Vanguard and No. 15 The Master’s (Calif.).
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): Concordia (Ore.) receives its second-straight and 18th overall No. 1 ranking this week, which currently ranks fourth on the all-time list … Three other teams have held the No.1 ranking this season: Lindsey Wilson (Ky.), Vanguard (Calif.) and Embry-Riddle (Fla.) …Lindsey Wilson leads all NAIA schools with 48 all-time No. 1 rankings, followed by former member Azusa Pacific (Calif.) (32) and Westmont (Calif.) (19) … Overall, 13 different programs have claimed the No. 1 spot in the poll … Lindsey Wilson also owns the longest active streak of consecutive appearances in the Top 25 with 158-consecutive mentions, including a string of 128-straight top 10 rankings … Concordia owns the second longest active streak at 138-straight polls … Davenport’s (Mich.) No. 7 ranking on Sept. 17 is the highest in program history … Northwood (Fla.) is spending its second-straight week at No. 2 – its highest mention dating back to 1999 … Westmont’s No. 3 ranking in the fifth regular-season edition was its first top three mention since Sept. 13, 2006 … Thirteen of the 21 conferences, independents and unaffiliated groups are represented in the seventh regular-season Top 25 … Thirty-seven teams have been ranked through four polls in 2013.2013 NAIA Women’s Soccer Coaches’ Top 25 Poll – No. 8 (Oct. 29)
|RANK||LAST TIME||SCHOOL (1ST PLACE VOTES)||2013 RECORD||TOTAL POINTS|
|1||1||Concordia (Ore.) (20)||13-1-1||591|
|3||3||Westmont (Calif.) (1)||12-0-3||548|
|5||5||Lindsey Wilson (Ky.)||13-3-0||515|
|7||9||Spring Arbor (Mich.)||16-2-1||462|
|9||10||William Carey (Miss.)||12-4-0||445|
|12||14||St. Thomas (Fla.)||13-1-1||380|
|14||16||Olivet Nazarene (Ill.)||11-3-1||349|
|15||15||The Master’s (Calif.)||13-3-0||320|
|16||12||Martin Methodist (Tenn.)||11-3-1||301|
|18||RV||Robert Morris (Ill.)||11-2-1||256|
|19||21||Our Lady of the Lake (Texas)||14-2-1||227|
|22||T23||Cal State San Marcos||9-4-1||158|
|23||25||St. Ambrose (Iowa)||12-3-1||152|
|24||T23||Texas at Brownsville||11-3-0||145|
Others Receiving Votes: Thomas (Ga.) 126; Kansas Wesleyan 85; Avila (Mo.) 73; Mobile (Ala.) 48; Georgia Gwinnett 38; Grace (Ind.) 29; Hastings (Neb.) 28; Reinhardt (Ga.) 15; Viterbo (Wis.) 15; John Brown (Ark.) 14; Oklahoma Wesleyan 10; Columbia (Mo.) 6; Northwestern Ohio 6; Trinity Christian (Ill.) 4; Rocky Mountain (Mont.) 4.