RIVERSIDE --- Coming off back to back PacWest titles, California Baptist University was once again picked to repeat as conference champion in the annual preseason coaches’ poll.
In addition, Bernadette Witz was selected as Preseason Player of the Year and Rosie Nakata was named Preseason Goalkeeper of the Year. The Lancers also had Kelly Jenks and Melissa Laxamana named to the Preseason All-PacWest team.
CBU went 13-1 in conference play last season, winning a second consecutive title. The Lancers received 10 first place votes in the poll for a total of 166 points. Azusa Pacific received a pair of first place votes and was tabbed second, while Point Loma sits third in the poll with 141 points. BYU-Hawaii received the final first place vote.
Witz and Nakata were each named Player and Goalkeeper of the Year last season and made All-PacWest first team. Witz led CBU with 26 points during the regular season last year and scored a PacWest best five game winning goals. Nakata recorded five shutouts and carried a 0.80 goals against average through her 15 regular season starts last year.
Jenks, an All-PacWest first team honoree last year, was one of four forwards named to the preseason list. She led CBU with 16 goals in 2012. Laxamana helped anchor a defense that posted six shutouts in a row at one point last season and allowed just five goals in its last 14 games. The senior defender was named All-PacWest third team for her junior campaign.
All four honorees for CBU are seniors this season. The Lancers were the only team with four players honored on the preseason list.
CBU opens the season Sept. 5 at Chico State.