2010 NEC Lacrosse Preseason Coaches' Poll

Somerset, NJ -- Two-time defending champion Sacred Heart was selected as the 2010 Northeast Conference (NEC) Women's Lacrosse preseason favorite in a vote conducted by the league head coaches. The Pioneers received five first place votes, slipping ahead of Monmouth, which earned three first place votes. Quinnipiac, the 2009 NEC runner-up, tallied two first place votes and was picked third, while Robert Morris was slotted fourth. Mount St. Mary's and Wagner were selected in fifth and sixth place, respectively. Long Island, Bryant, Central Connecticut State and Saint Francis (PA) rounded out the field.

Sacred Heart (12-7, 7-1 NEC) is coming off its second straight NEC title and returns All-NEC first team goalkeeper Chelsea Wagner (Aurora, CO/Smoky Hill). Wagner ranked second in the league last season in both goals-against-average (8.81 gaa) and save percentage (.541) while earning 12 victories. Eleventh year head coach Laura Cook also returns three All-NEC second teamers looking to lead the Pioneers back the NCAA Tournament. Attacker Carissa Hauser (East Northport, NY/Commack) returns for her senior season after ranking second in the conference in points (72) and third in assists (31) a year ago. She also tied for the league lead with three game-winning goals. Senior Jackie Pierce (Cortlandt Manor, NY/Walter Panas (Stony Brook)) should once again anchor the back line after ranking third on the team in draws (33) and fourth in ground balls (34). Sophomore Katie Kmiotek (Farmingville, NY/Sachem East) finished fourth on the Pioneers with 18 goals in her freshman season.

Monmouth (7-11, 5-3 NEC) begins a new era with veteran head coach Denise Wescott taking over the reigns in West Long Branch after spending the last four years at NEC rival Mount St. Mary's, where she compiled a 22-10 league record. Monmouth will look to a trio of seniors to lead the Hawks to their 13th consecutive NEC Tournament. Senior midfielder and two-time All-NEC first team selection Megan Brennan (King of Prussia, PA/Archbishop Carroll) has paced the MU offense in back-to-back seasons. Brennan finished second on the circuit in 2009 with 45 goals and ranked fifth with 59 points. She also finished second on the Hawks in both ground balls (29) and draw controls (31). Brennan has already surpassed the century mark with 112 goals over the course of her career to go along with 150 points. Senior midfielder Ali Pollock (Watervliet, NY/Shaker) finished second on the team with 39 points, including 17 goals and a team-high 22 assists (seventh in NEC) to claim all-league second team accolades. All-NEC second team midfielder Perry DeWitt (Malvern, PA/Great Valley), a senior, tallied 14 goals and 17 points last season, and also topped Monmouth with 37 draw controls and 21 caused turnovers.

Quinnipiac (13-3, 7-1 NEC) returns 18 players from last year's squad, which captured a share of the program's second consecutive regular season crown. The Bobcats established school records in 2009 in both wins (13) and winning percentage (.813). Graduate student and team captain Katie Latonick (Severna Park, MD/Archbishop Spalding) set a single-season school record and ranked second in the league with 44 assists last season, and also finished seventh in the conference with 54 points. She would go on to earn NEC All-Tournament recognition after recording nine points in two postseason games. Fifth year head coach Danie Caro brings back the reigning NEC Rookie of the Year in sophomore midfielder Marissa Caroleo (N. Babylon, NY/North Babylon). Caroleo finished fourth on the team with 20 goals and 19 draw controls, and also racked up 22 ground balls, good for fifth on the club.

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