Claremont-Mudd-Scripps (CMS) received all six first place votes and was tabbed to finish first in the 2018 Southern California Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (SCIAC) Women's Lacrosse Preseason Poll following a vote conducted by the league's head coaches.
CMS turned in a terrific 2017 campaign, posting a 16-2 overall record that included an unblemished, 10-0 mark in conference play as the Athenas defeated Redlands (17-6) and Chapman (18-9) on their way to earning an at-large bid to the NCAA Division III Championship. CMS hosted Colorado College - a team it had beaten in the regular season, 15-11 - but fell to the Tigers in the NCAA Second Round, 15-12. Heading into the 2018 season, the Athenas received all six first place votes and 36 points in the SCIAC preseason poll, and are also slotted 22nd in the IWLCA Division III Top 25 Preseason Poll.
After posting a 9-8 record, 4-6 in SCIAC play, Redlands has been slated to finish second in the SCIAC in 2018 with 25 points. The Bulldogs will look to build on last season's efforts when they advanced to the SCIAC Tournament semifinals before falling to eventual champion CMS.
Occidental finished third in the league standings a year ago and are tabbed to return to that spot in 2018 after notching 22 points following the preseason vote. The Tigers registered an 11-6 overall record highlighted by a 5-5 mark in SCIAC play. Occidental earned the third seed in last year's postseason tournament but fell to second-seeded Chapman, 17-10.
Pomona-Pitzer edged the Panthers for fourth in the 2018 preseason poll as the Sagehens received 19 points, while Chapman received 17 points in the vote. Pomona-Pitzer logged a 7-10 overall record, 3-7 in SCIAC play and will look to make an appearance in the 2018 SCIAC Tournament. The Panthers finished second in the conference a season ago with an 11-7 overall ledger, including a 7-3 mark against SCIAC competition. They will also look to return to the postseason tournament where they fell to CMS in the title game, 18-9.
Rounding out the poll is Whittier with seven points. The Poets earned a 4-12 overall record in 2017, and a 1-9 mark in SCIAC play.
The 2018 season gets started Wednesday, February 14 when Occidental hosts Redlands in a conference tilt at 4 p.m.
2018 SCIAC Women's Lacrosse Preseason Poll
(#) Denotes First Place Votes
1. CMS (6) - 36 points
2. Redlands - 25 points
3. Occidental - 22 points
4. Pomona-Pitzer - 19 points
5. Chapman - 17 points
6. Whittier - 7 points