Thomasville, NC- Belmont Abbey women’s soccer has been selected the top team going into the 2006 season.  Carolinas-Virginia Athletics Conference head coaches voted the Crusaders the top team in an annual preseason poll to rank predicted order of finish within the league.

            The Crusaders selection comes upon good merit by finishing the 2005 campaign with an 18-4 overall and 10-1 CVAC record.  With that they captured the CVAC tournament championship and split the regular season title, all in head coach Glad Bugariu’s first season at the helm.

            The Crusaders return 14 players off last year’s squad, including their top three scorers, headlined by junior forward Erin Kolb, who scored a team-leading 14 goals en route to earning First Team All-CVAC and All-Region honors. Also, Bugariu has brought in 13 talented newcomers to add to the solid core of returnees to help the Abbey continue their winning ways.

            New Pfeiffer Head Coach Sarah Denton leads ten returning starters from last year’s regular season CVAC conference co-champions (10-1 in the CVAC, 14-5 overall).  Led by junior forward Laura Crews, who was the 2005 CVAC Player of the Year, All-CVAC First Team and All-Region team member, and senior midfielder Maria Reis, who was also an All-CVAC First Team member, the Falcons hope to continue last year's success.  Second Team All-CVAC members junior Kristen Brahosky and sophomore Katie Franca will secure the Falcon defense.  Coach Denton added, "I am very happy to be here at Pfeiffer.  I hope with hard work and dedication we can continue to build on last season's success.  It should be a very exciting year."

            The Barton College women’s soccer team has high expectations for the 2006 season after finishing third in the CVAC at 9-2 and posting a 14-5 overall record last fall. The Lady Bulldogs, of fourth-year head coach Stacey Tant, achieved rankings of first in the Southeast Region and tenth nationally and won nine games straight at one point.  Back from that squad are All-CVAC first-teamers Jordan Carter in the midfield and Tara Davis at forward. Both were second-team All-Region selections as well.  Anchoring the defense will be returning All-CVAC second team performer Stephanie Schraw. That trio will be joined by 11 returnees and a talented cast of eight newcomers.

            Rounding out the poll 4-12 was: Mount Olive, Limestone, Queens, Erskine, Coker, Lees-McRae, Anderson, Converse, and St. Andrews respectively.



CVAC Women’s Soccer Preseason Poll (# of First Place Votes in Parenthesis)                                        

1.      Belmont Abbey                                     (8)        116                             

2.      Pfeiffer                                                 (3)        112

3.   Barton                                                              97

4.   Mount Olive                                          (1)        96

5.   Limestone                                                        79       

6.   Queens                                                            69

7.   Erskine                                                             61

8.   Coker                                                               44

9.   Lees-McRae                                                     37

10. Anderson                                                         35

11. Converse                                                         27

12. St. Andrews                                                     19


2006 CVAC “Preseason Players to Watch” List

(As selected by the member institutions)


Name:                                      School: Year:                Highlights:

Megan Delancey                      Anderson         SR        2004 & 05 All-CVAC Honorable Mention

Erin Kolb                                  Belmont Abbey JR         2005 1st Team All-CVAC

Jill Barnes                                 Belmont Abbey JR         2005 2nd Team All-CVAC

Tara Davis                                Barton              JR         2005 1st Team All-CVAC, NC All-State, & All-Region 2nd team

Jordan Carter                           Barton              SR        2005 1st Team All-CVAC, NC All-State, & All-Region 2nd team

Stephanie Schraw                    Barton              SO        2005 2nd Team All-CVAC

Kathryn Friedmann                 Coker              So        Forward & ’05 Team MVP

Cara Durrance                        Coker              SR        2005 All-CVAC Honorable Mention

Samantha Chapman               Converse          JR         Led team in goals and points in ‘05

Anna Weldon                           Erskine             So        2005 1st Team All-CVAC

Anita Hekman                          Lees-McRae     SR        2005 1st Team All-CVAC

S. Katharine Smith                   Lees-McRae     SR        2 yr starter & Team Captain

Ashley Dugan                           Limestone        SR        2005 1st Team All-CVAC

Liz Eichorn                               Limestone        SR        2005 2nd Team All-CVAC

Lee Cribb                                 Limestone        So        2005 2nd Team All-CVAC

April Jacobs                              Mount Olive      JR         2004 & 05 1st Team All-CVAC, Two-time All-Region

Gina Dos Santos                      Mount Olive      JR         2004 & 05 2nd Team All-CVAC

Kate Painter                             Mount Olive      JR         2004 & 05 2nd Team All-CVAC

Laura Crews                            Pfeiffer             JR         2005 CVAC Player of the Year, 1st Team All-CVAC, & All-Region

Maria Reis                                Pfeiffer             SR       2005 CVAC 1st Team

Kristen Brahosky                      Pfeiffer            JR        2005 CVAC 2nd Team
Katie Franca                             Pfeiffer             So        2005 CVAC 2nd Team

Kari Byzewski                           Queens          So        2005 CVAC Freshman of the Year & 2nd Team All-CVAC

Jacqueline Groff                       Queens           So        Midfielder & ‘05 Team Offensive MVP

Crystal Olu-Taylor                    St. Andrews     JR         2003 & 04 2nd Team All-CVAC

Meghan McAuliffe     &