VSU women’s soccer was picked fifth in the 2019 Gulf South Conference Preseason Poll, the league office announced Aug. 6.
West Florida, who won the GSC title in 2018, was picked as the league favorite with 12 of 14 first place votes and 168 points.
The Blazers finished the 2018 season 11-7 and 9-4 in the GSC under second-year head coach Stephen Andrew.
Andrew has produced a berth in the conference tournament for two consecutive seasons
Along with the team ranking, VSU junior defender Lexie Hall was the only Blazer named to the GSC All-Preseason Team.
Hall earned GSC First Team All-Conference honors last season as a sophomore.
She scored one goal and recorded three assists for five points. Hall helped lead the Blazer back line to eight shutouts and a 1.27 goals against average in 2018.
West Florida led with four selections on the team, while West Alabama had three.
VSU, Mississippi College, Auburn Montgomery, Christian Brothers and Lee each had one selection.
Hall will take the field with a cast of familiar faces, as VSU returns nine of 11 starters from its 2018 team. Hall and senior Ashley Lewis returns as all-conference honorees from 2018.
Lewis set many school records last season, becoming the all-time leading scorer in a season and a career, while breaking the school record for goals scored in a season and a career.
She also holds the school record for game-winners with nine.
Goalkeepers Caroline Embler, junior, and Samantha Blanford, senior, will return.
The Blazers open practice Aug. 14 at 8 a.m. at the Athletic Field House and will open the 2019 season Sept. 5 at 7 p.m. at Florida Southern.
The 2019 home stand starts Sept. 8 at 6 p.m. versus Clayton State.
Written by Prince Robinson Jr., Sports Editor. Photo courtesy of VSU Athletics.
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