Aug 13, 2013
UCF Athletics Social Media Directory
By Jenna Marina
ORLANDO, Fla. (UCFKnights.com) - The UCF women's soccer team received national attention Tuesday in the National Soccer Coaches Association of America (NSCAA) and Continental Tire preseason rankings, claiming the No. 21 spot.
UCF is the only team of the American Athletic Conference in its inaugural season to earn recognition in the poll. Defending national champion North Carolina earned the No. 1 slot, followed by Stanford, Florida State, Penn State and UCLA in the top five.
The Knights closed 2012 at No. 20 nationally after earning a nod in the top 25 each week of the season, climbing as high as No. 6 - the program's highest mark in two decades. The team compiled a 17-5-2 record last year, which included a school-record 15 shutouts.
UCF enters 2013 with a veteran team joined by a talented pack of newcomers who are ready to make a push toward the College Cup. The Knights return seven starters, including All-American defender Marissa Diggs, and three of their top five goal scorers from a year ago when UCF captured its first Conference USA Tournament title.
College Sports Madness showed the Knights a lot of love in its pick of The American Preseason All-Conference honors. Diggs was selected as the favorite for Defensive Player of the Year, and first-year head coach Tiffany Roberts Sahaydak was tabbed the Coach of the Year.
Diggs also earned a nod to the preseason all-conference first team while junior midfielder Madison Barney, junior defender Carleigh Williams, senior defender Ashley Nicol and senior goalkeeper Lianne Maldonado were all lauded on the second team.
The Knights' lone exhibition match of the season is set for 7 p.m Friday at the UCF Soccer Complex against No. 9 Florida. Admission is free. UCF will travel to Honolulu, Hawai'i for its season opener against Washington on Aug. 23 in the No Ka Oi Tournament.
The soccer scarf is back for season ticket holders. For $30, fans will receive a special scarf, which will serve as one-general admission seat to all 2013 regular season home matches. The GOLD Pass, which includes one general admission seat for all home men's soccer, women's soccer, volleyball, softball, women's basketball and track & field events, is available for $90. For more information on how to purchase tickets, visit UCFKnights.com or call 407-UCF-1000.