UVA men’s soccer picked second in Coastal Division in ACC preseason poll
The UVA men’s soccer team has been picked to finish second in the Coastal Division in the preseason ACC coaches’ poll, as voted upon by the conference’s 12 head coaches and released Tuesday by the league office. With 62 points, UVa was selected second in the division behind reigning national champion Notre Dame, which totaled 64 points.
Virginia received four first-place votes in the Coastal Division and also earned three nods for the overall championship. Notre Dame was the voted the preseason favorite for the overall title with six votes. North Carolina (53 points) was picked third in the Coastal Division, followed by Duke (37), Virginia Tech (23) and Pittsburgh (13).
League newcomer Louisville was picked as the Atlantic Division favorite with 69 total points. Wake Forest (57), Clemson (50), NC State (30), Boston College (26) and Syracuse (20) rounded out the Atlantic Division.
The 2014 season marks the first for the league under a divisional format. Each team will play every other squad in its division, plus three crossover games. The two division winners are guaranteed one of the top two seeds for the ACC Championship.
Ranked third nationally in the preseason, Virginia boasts a veteran side in 2014, with 18 returning letterwinners combining for 363 career starts (fourth most in Division I). The Cavaliers went 13-6-5 and reached the NCAA College Cup semifinals last year. Nine of the returning letterwinners started at least 10 games apiece last season, while goalkeeper Calle Brown (R-Sr., Leesburg, Va.) also is back after starting the final eight matches of the 2013 campaign.
UVa returns 86.6 percent of its goal scoring from 2013 – sixth highest in the nation. Virginia’s leading scorer from 2013, All-American Eric Bird (Sr., Virginia Beach, Va.), anchors the Cavaliers in the midfield.
Virginia will play an intrasquad scrimmage at 7 p.m. Tuesday (Aug. 19) at Klöckner Stadium. Admission is free for the scrimmage, which will consist of two 30-minute halves.
The Cavaliers will conclude their exhibition schedule at 7 p.m. Saturday (Aug. 23) against No. 9 Georgetown at Klöckner Stadium. UVa begins the 2014 regular season on Aug. 29 when it plays host to No. 25 Old Dominion in an 8 p.m. match as part of a doubleheader with the UVa women’s soccer team.
2014 ACC Men’s Soccer Preseason Coaches Poll
(first place votes)
Notre Dame (6)
North Carolina (2)
1. Notre Dame (6), 64
2. Virginia (4), 62
3. North Carolina (2), 53
4. Duke, 37
5. Virginia Tech, 23
6. Pitt, 13