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Courtesy: CAA
Northeastern's lone senior, co-captain Lindsay Bennett

NU, Drexel FH Ranked In NFHCA Preseason Poll

Courtesy: CAA
          Release: 08/27/2013
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Two CAA field hockey teams are ranked in the 2013 preseason NFHCA Division I field hockey poll which was released on Tuesday.

For the second straight season, the Northeastern field hockey team has etched a spot in the Penn Monto / NFHCA Division I Preseason Poll. The Huskies, which came in at No. 15, earned 226 points in the first national poll of the season.

NU is one of two CAA squads included in the poll joining 2012 conference champion Drexel, which is 17th with 188 points. North Carolina, the runner-up in last season's NCAA tournament, earned the preseason top spot (978 points), while Maryland (903 points), defending national champion Princeton (883 points), Connecticut (749 points) and Syracuse (737 points) made up the rest of the top five.

Northeastern ended the 2012 season at No. 12 in the nation thanks to a 14-7 record and its second straight appearance in both the CAA championship game and the NCAA tournament. The Huskies kick off the 2013 season on Friday when they host Monmouth at 6 p.m. in the first of two weekend games at Dedham Field, with the second contest featuring 11th-ranked Northwestern on Sunday.

Drexel, which was picked to repeat as CAA champions in a vote by the league's head coaches for the preseason poll, will be led by senior co-captain and 2013 preseason CAA Player of the Year Lindsay McArdle. The Upper Darby, Pa., native started in all 22 games for the Dragons last season finishing with a team-high 12 goals and recorded three assists for 27 points overall. She was also named to the All-CAA first-team in 2012.

Last season, Drexel won the program's first CAA field hockey title with a 2-1 overtime victory against the Huskies. The squad earned its first-ever automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament and finished the season with a 15-7 overall record. The Dragons, who open up their season versus Indiana and No. 10 Duke in Durham, N.C., this weekend, return 19 players from last year's roster, including four players who earned postseason honors.