Header Background

Little East Conference preseason polls released in field hockey and volleyball

 PLYMOUTH, N.H. - The Little East Conference pre-season coaches' polls have been announced in field hockey and women's volleyball, and Plymouth State University is picked to finish in the top two in both races.  The votes were cast by the conference's head coaches, and the polls were released Tuesday by LEC Commissioner William M. Moore.

            The Panther field hockey team, which finished in second place the past two seasons after winning three straight LEC titles from 2000-02, received three first-place votes in this year's balloting and finished runner-up with 135 points.  Defending champion Keene State got eight top votes and was predicted to repeat, earning 138 points.  Worcester State received the other first-place vote and finished third in the poll with 104 points, and Westfield State was fourth (95).  There are now 12 teams competing for the LEC field hockey title, with the addition of Western Connecticut.

            The Panther women's volleyball team, which captured its first LEC championship last season, received six of the eight first-place votes this fall and earned the top spot with 62 points.  Eastern Connecticut got one first-place vote and finished second in the balloting with 52 points, while Western Connecticut received the other top vote and finished tied for third with Rhode Island College.  Those top four schools finished in a four-way tie for first in last year's regular season race before PSU emerged as champions by winning the LEC Tournament.

            The LEC field hockey and volleyball tournaments are scheduled for the first week in November, with the conference champions receiving an automatic bid to the NCAA Division III Tournament.

            The complete Little East Conference field hockey and volleyball preseason poll results are listed below:

  2005 LEC Field Hockey Pre-Season Poll
1.        Keene State  (8)                       138
2.        Plymouth State  (3)                 135
3.        Worcester State  (1)                104
4.        Westfield State                           95
5.        Fitchburg State                          93
6.        Framingham State                     91
7.        Eastern Connecticut                  77
8.        Southern Maine                          71
9.        Bridgewater State                      42
10.      Salem State                               41
11.      UMass-Dartmouth                     31
12.      Western Connecticut                 18

    (first-place votes in parentheses)

  2005 LEC Volleyball Pre-Season Poll
1.        Plymouth State (6)                  62
2.        Eastern Connecticut  (1)          52
T-3.    Western Connecticut  (1)         46
T-3.    Rhode Island College               46
5.        UMass Dartmouth                    29
6.        Keene State                              28
7.        Southern Maine                        14
8.        UMass Boston                          11

  (first-place votes in parentheses)

  -- 30 --