Big Ten Women’s Soccer 2022 Preseason Rankings and Players to Watch revealed
It’s believed to be the first time in conference history two schools have tied for top honors in the preseason women’s soccer balloting.
Penn State, which has won 20 conference titles and advanced to the third round of the 2021 NCAA Tournament, has been chosen first in every Big Ten preseason coaches’ poll since 2003. Rutgers claimed its first Big Ten title last season and rode that momentum to the second NCAA College Cup berth in program history.
Rounding out the top five in the team balloting were Michigan, Wisconsin and Ohio State. The Wolverines won their first Big Ten Tournament championship in 2021 and advanced to the quarterfinals of the NCAA Tournament. The Badgers reached the NCAA third round last year and have competed in 10 of the past 13 NCAA tournaments, while the Buckeyes earned their 12th NCAA Tournament bid in the past 15 seasons.
Five Big Ten schools are ranked or receiving votes in the preseason United Soccer Coaches Top 25 poll, led by No. 6 Rutgers, No. 9 Michigan and No. 14 Penn State. Purdue and Wisconsin also received votes in the preseason poll.
Also on Monday, the conference unveiled the 2022 Big Ten Players to Watch List, as selected by the conference coaches. Nearly half (19) of the student-athletes on the 2022 Big Ten Players to Watch List are returning all-conference selections, including two of last season’s individual award recipients — Michigan State’s Lauren Kozal (Big Ten Goalkeeper of the Year) and Rutgers’ Riley Tiernan (Big Ten Freshman of the Year).
The Big Ten Players to Watch List features three United Soccer Coaches All-Americans (Kozal and Penn State’s Ally Schlegel and Penelope Hocking, the latter of whom transferred from USC during the offseason), along with 22 Academic All-Big Ten honorees and 10 Big Ten Distinguished Scholars.
The 2022 Big Ten women’s soccer season kicks off Thursday with all 14 conference schools in action, highlighted by five Top 25 matchups, three of which will be on Big Ten campuses — No. 9 Michigan entertains No. 20 Washington State (7 p.m. ET), No. 14 Penn State hosts No. 19 Georgetown (7 p.m. ET), Purdue welcomes No. 15 USC (7 p.m.), Wisconsin visits No. 7 TCU (8 p.m. ET) and Iowa travels to No. 13 UCLA (10 p.m. ET).
2022 BIG TEN WOMEN’S SOCCER PRESEASON POLL
1. (tie) Penn State / (tie) Rutgers
5. Ohio State
6. Michigan State
2022 BIG TEN WOMEN’S SOCCER PLAYERS TO WATCH LIST
- Ashley Cathro, R-Sr., D, Illinois
- Eileen Murphy, Sr., D, Illinois
- Kendra Pasquale, R-Sr., M, Illinois
- Jamie Gerstenberg, So., GK, Indiana
- Jordyn Levy, So., F, Indiana
- Arianna Rose, Fr., D, Indiana
- Samantha Cary, Sr., D, Iowa
- Kenzie Roling, So., F, Iowa
- Hailey Rydberg, Grad., M, Iowa
- Malikae Dayes, Grad., F, Maryland
- Juliana Lynch, Jr., M, Maryland
- Hannah Blake, Sr., M, Michigan
- Lily Farkas, Sr., M, Michigan
- Avery Kalitta, So., M, Michigan
- Ruby Diodati, Grad., D, Michigan State
- Lauren Kozal, R-Sr., GK, Michigan State
- Samantha White, Grad., D, Michigan State
- Sophia Boman, Jr., M, Minnesota
- Izzy Brown, Sr., F, Minnesota
- Megan Plaschko, Sr., GK, Minnesota
- Eleanor Dale, Jr., F, Nebraska
- Reagan Raabe, Jr., M, Nebraska
- Sarah Weber, So., F, Nebraska
- Josie Aulicino, Jr., M, Northwestern
- Meg Boade, Jr., F, Northwestern
- Aurea del Carmen, Sr., M, Northwestern
- Talani Barnett, Grad., D, Ohio State
- Kayla Fischer, Grad., F, Ohio State
- Sydney Jones, So., D, Ohio State
- Penelope Hocking, Grad., F, Penn State
- Payton Linnehan, Sr., F, Penn State
- Ally Schlegel, R-Sr., F, Penn State
- Sydney Duarte, Grad., M, Purdue
- Gracie Dunaway, So., F, Purdue
- Emily Mathews, Jr., M, Purdue
- Sara Brocious, Jr., M, Rutgers
- Meagan McClelland, Grad., GK, Rutgers
- Riley Tiernan, So., F, Rutgers
- Emma Jaskaniec, Sr., M, Wisconsin
- Aidan McConnell, So., D, Wisconsin
- Natalie Viggiano, Grad., M, Wisconsin