Big West Conference Releases Preseason Poll

Mary Beth Mazurek

July 31, 2012

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DAVIS, Calif. - The UC Davis women's soccer team, which surprised pollsters in 2011 by earning a berth in the Big West Tournament after being picked eighth in the preseason, will look for history to repeat itself after being voted seventh by the league's head coaches in this year's poll.

In addition, defender Mary Beth Mazurek was voted to the 2012 Preseason All-Big West team.

The Aggies open practice for the 2012 season on Wednesday, preparing for a 19-game season that starts against visiting Fresno State on Aug. 17. UC Davis will host an exhibition against the University of San Francisco on Aug. 10.

Defending Big West Tournament champion Long Beach State was voted to repeat this season, earning nine of 10 first-place votes to finish ahead of regular-season champion UC Irvine which received the other and is second. Cal State Fullerton was selected fourth and was followed by UC Santa Barbara and Cal Poly. The Aggies tied with Pacific for seventh while UC Riverside and incoming Big West member Hawaii tied for ninth.

UC Davis enjoyed an impressive 2011 season after being picked to finish near the bottom of the conference standings. The Aggies posted an 11-7-1 overall record while tying for fourth in the Big West with a 4-3-1 mark. Along the way they had winning streaks of five and four games, respectively.

Mazurek, a junior from Ventura, started all 19 games last season, picking up a pair of assists. She was joined on the preseason team by forwards Nadia Link (Long Beach State), Natalia Ledezma (UC Irvine) and Ann Marie Tangorra (Cal State Fullerton), midfielders Cami Privett (UC Irvine), Cici Kobinski (Cal Poly) and Erin Ortega (UC Santa Barbara), defenders Alex Balcer (Long Beach State), Brittini Beeman (Pacific) and Katie Russ (Cal State Northridge), and goalkeepers Cynthia Jacobo (Cal State Northridge) and Makenna Henry (UC Santa Barbara).

UC Davis' schedule features nine home games including four in a row early in the season. Included are the regular-season opener against Fresno State and consecutive matchups versus Nevada (Aug. 26), San Jose State (Sept. 2), Cal (Sept. 7) and Northern Arizona (Sept. 9). It'll play at the UC Riverside Invitational in September and open Big West action on Sept. 28 at UC Santa Barbara.