2009 Florida College Soccer Season Outlook

Our Top Five Picks for the 2009 Season

August 17, 2009

1. Florida State, although a fairly young team, should be the class of the state again this year. But to achieve their preseason rank of #6 by NSCAA they are going to have to find some more offense from their young players.

Key Games: Thurs Oct. 22 North Carolina at home, Fri Oct. 30 at Virginia.

Players to watch: Tiffany McCarty, Toni Pressley,  Ella Stephan, and from the Mac Herman watch list, Becky Edwards  and  Amanda DaCosta

Freshmen to watch: Breezy Hupp

Our Expectations: To finish 4th in the ACC Conference behind North Carolina, BC, and Virginia, and to make at least the sweet 16 in the NCAA Tournament.

2. Central Florida will press FSU for the top team in Florida. A year after making it to the second round of the NCAA Tournament UCF is poised to have its best season ever.

Key Games:  09/10/09 Florida State at home, 09/27/09 vs. Memphis

Players to watch: Yvonne George, Becca Thomas, Nikki Moore, junior college transfer  Kim Newsome and from the Mac Herman watch list Aline Reis

Freshmen to watch: Nicolette Radovcic, Tiia Tikkanen

Our Expectations: To finish first in Conference USA and make it to at least the 2nd round of the NCAA Tournament.

3. Florida Gators had a very young team last year that pulled together and made it to the third round of the NCAA Tournament. Also should be in the running for the best team in Florida. The University of Florida soccer team is No. 10 on the National Soccer Coaches Association of America (NSCAA) preseason poll.

Key Games: Fri Sep 18 Florida State at home, Thu Oct 22 LSU at home

Players to watch: Lindsay Thompson, Caitlin Howard, Ashlee Elliott

Freshmen to watch: Brooke Thigpen, Erika Tymrak

Our Expectations: To win the SEC and make it to at least the 3rd round of the NCAA Tournament.

4. Miami had a great start to the season going 7 -0 before their leading goal scorer Brittney Steinbruch went down with an injury. The key to their success this year will again lay at the feet of Steinbruch.

Key Games: 10/04/09 at Florida State, 10/25/09 vs. North Carolina at home

Players to watch: Brittney Steinbruch, Lauren Singer, Brittney Macdonald

Freshmen to watch: Kate Howarth

Our Expectations: To finish 5th in the ACC Conference behind North Carolina, BC, Virginia, and FSU, and to make it to at least the first round of the NCAA Tournament.

5. South Florida had big expectations going into last season, but those expectations were soon dashed with the loss of Lindsay Brauer, their biggest scoring threat the two previous seasons, to a possibly life threatening  heart condition and with last season's leading scorer Chelsea Klotz being hampered all season with shin splints. This season Klotz is 100% and with the insertion of a new formation and style of play the Bulls again have high expectations this season.

Key Games: Thu, Sep 17   at Marquette, Sun, Oct 11   Connecticut  at home

Players to watch: Klotz, Chelsea, Sansar, Bahar, Lofton-Malachi, Mallori, Pacheco, Gina

Freshmen to watch: Patterson, Taylor, Eagle, Alexandra "Boo"

Our Expectations:  To finish 3rd in the American Division of the Big East Conference behind West Virginia and Marquette, and to make the NCAA Tournament.