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Courtesy: CAA
Drexel's Lindsay McArdle

Drexel Headlines CAA FH Preseason Poll

Courtesy: CAA
          Release: 08/12/2013
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RICHMOND, Va. (August 12, 2013) –After capturing the program’s first ever CAA field hockey title in 2012, Drexel is still the team to beat in 2013 according to a vote by the league’s head field hockey coaches.

The Dragons received five first-place votes and 34 points to earn the top spot in the poll. Northeastern, which has been the CAA runner-up for the past two seasons, earned the other two first-place votes and was second with 31 points, and James Madison finished in third place with 26 points. Delaware was selected fourth by totaling 21 points, just edging out William and Mary, which collected 18 points. Hofstra was chosen sixth in the poll, with Towson rounding out the list.

Drexel is coming off a solid 2012 campaign in which the team finished 15-7 (5-2 CAA) and earned a spot in the NCAA Field Hockey Championship. The Dragons return a total of 19 players – 10 starters – including four players who earned postseason honors one year ago. Senior Lindsay McArdle, a first-team All-CAA pick, led the Dragons with 12 goals and finished second in points with 27 in 2012. Drexel also returns sophomores Lauren Hibshman, Danielle Grassi and Jenna Knouse, who were all members of the CAA All-Rookie squad last season, with Hibshman also earning second-team all-conference honors. Junior goaltender Jantien Gunter started all 22 games a year ago and led the league in shutouts with six while finishing second in overall saves (128).

Northeastern had another successful season in 2012, finishing with a 14-7 (5-2) mark and earning a berth in the NCAA tournament for the second year in a row. Sophomore midfielder Zoe Kale started every game last season and was a member of the CAA All-Rookie team. Lindsay Bennett, the Huskies’ only senior, will again play a key role after finishing with five goals and 11 assists. NU will look to a freshmen class of 11 players to contribute right away.

James Madison returns a trio of second-team All-CAA selections from a 2012 squad that finished 4-3 in conference play and reached the semifinals of the CAA tournament. Headlining that group is Rachel Wein, who led the Dukes in scoring last year with nine goals and 21 points. Loes Stijntjes registered two goals and two assists last season while being named a second-team All-CAA and All-Rookie selection. Also returning is sophomore goalkeeper Lena Wimmert, who finished her freshman season ranking third in NCAA Divison I with an .811 save percentage. She started all of the team’s 19 games and was also named to the  All-CAA second team and All-Rookie team.

The CAA is known as one of the nation’s best field hockey conferences, having placed multiple teams in the 16-team NCAA Field Hockey Championship in four of the past six seasons.

2013 CAA FIELD HOCKEY PRESEASON COACHES POLL

1. Drexel

34 (5 first-place votes)

2. Northeastern

31 (2 first-place votes)

3. James Madison

26

4. Delaware

21

5. William & Mary

18

6. Hofstra

11

7. Towson

6

   

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