Braves picked fourth in preseason coaches’ poll
Carrollton, GA – August 3, 2005 – It’s the West Georgia Braves’ first season of women’s soccer action in the Gulf South Conference and the Braves are already making waves. Wednesday, conference officials announced the annual preseason coaches’ poll and the Braves ranked fourth out of 11 schools participating in GSC women’s soccer.
“I’m not too surprised at the pick, but I am definitely pleased,” head coach Gareth O’Sullivan said. “But we’ve had a good recruiting year and other coaches in the conference know that.”
But the team still has yet to take the field for even fall practice yet, as the Braves report on Sunday evening, August 7, 2005. Among the returnees are two stars from last season’s team in Alex Udin and Stephanie Giles. Udin led the squad with 12 goals in 2004 and Giles was the team defensive leader.
Last year was just a warm-up for the 2005 season as the Braves did not play a conference schedule. Against three GSC opponents in 2004, West Georgia was 1-2, with the win coming in the last match of the season, a 6-1 blasting of Delta State.
“Being picked fourth of 11 this year will give the team confidence,” O’Sullivan said. “Fourth place at the end of the season would give us a trip to the conference tournament, which is the target for this year. But I’m not as worried about where we are picked in preseason as I will be in postseason rankings.”
O’Sullivan has a good, deep team coming in this year after a stellar recruiting class. The lone weak point for the Braves in 2005 will be in goal, as O’Sullivan is still searching for a keeper.
Two-a-days begin next week, and the season opener will be August 25, 2005, at 5 p.m. The Braves host Armstrong Atlantic in that matchup.