Liberty senior Chris Phillips
The Liberty Flames men's soccer squad has been chosen to finish third in the Big South Conference's annual preseason poll, as voted on by the league's head men's soccer coaches. The Flames received 70 points in being predicted to end the upcoming soccer season third in the conference standings.
Liberty returns eight of its 11 starters and 17 players from last season's squad, which finished its 2010 season with a 10-7-1 record and a 5-3 conference mark. The Flames completed the year third in conference standings.
The Flames finished the year ranked 21st in the nation in scoring offense by averaging 1.94 goals per contest and led the Big South Conference in goals allowed, with 0.93 goals per game average.
The panel selected High Point to win the conference title was selected first in the Big South's annual preseason poll. High Point senior forward Karo Okiomah was tabbed the league's Preseason Attacking Player of the Year and Panther senior goalkeeper Michael Chesler the Preseason Defensive Player of the Year by the panel.
High Point collected eight first-place votes and 97 points in being selected first, followed by Coastal Carolina which picked up one top vote and 89 points in being tabbed to finish second. After the Flames, Winthrop followed with 68 points in fourth, with Radford, who (63), Campbell (51), Gardner-Webb (44), UNC Asheville (32), Presbyterian College (21 points) and VMI (19) rounding out the poll.
The Flames open their 2011 season Aug. 27 in Indianapolis, Ind., against the IUPUI Jaguars. Liberty will host its first home contest of the year on Aug 30, when it hosts the Longwood Lancers. Match time is scheduled for 7 p.m. The Big South Men's Soccer Championship is slated for Nov. 10-13 in on the campus of Gardner-Webb in Boiling Springs, N.C.
2011 Big South Conference Preseason Men's Soccer Poll
Team (first-place votes)
High Point (8)
Coastal Carolina (1)
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