DURHAM, N.C. – The National Field Hockey Coaches Association (NFHCA) released its preseason rankings Tuesday, Aug. 27, with Duke coming in at No. 10 on the initial 2013 Penn Monto/NFHCA Division I poll.
The Blue Devils are coming off of a pair of preseason scrimmages against James Madison and North Carolina over the past couple weeks, in addition to conducting preseason camp. Under the direction of head coach Pam Bustin, who enters her third season in Durham, the team returns 15 players from 2012 and welcomes six newcomers to the program.
Senior defender Paula Heimbach, a Longstreth/NFHCA third team All-America selection in 2012, was named to the Preseason All-ACC team last week. In addition, the league’s seven head coaches picked Duke to finish third in the conference this season.
The ACC was well-represented on the NFHCA Division I Preseason Poll, with five schools ranked in the top 10 and all seven ranked within the top 20. North Carolina and Maryland swept the top two spots in the poll, while Syracuse was ranked fifth, Virginia seventh, Wake Forest 18th and Boston College 19th.
The squad is set to open the 2013 slate Friday, Aug. 30 against Indiana at 3 p.m. The Blue Devils will also face No. 17 Drexel Sunday, Sept. 1 at 2 p.m., with both contests being held at Williams Field at Jack Katz Stadium.
2013 Penn Monto/NFHCA Division I Preseason Poll
|Institution||Points (first place votes in parenthesis)|
|1.||North Carolina||978 (33)|