Notre Dame Ranked Second in Preseason Poll
GREENSBORO, N.C. -- Notre Dame's women's soccer team is ranked second in the preseason National Soccer Coaches Association of America poll, the third straight season the Irish have been picked second in the preseason. North Carolina, who beat Notre Dame 1-0 in overtime in the 1996 NCAA final, is the top-ranked team. The Tar Heels and Irish will meet on Sept. 19, at Alumni Field in the adidas/Lady Footlocker Classic.
Five of Notre Dame's 1997 opponents appear in the preseason poll, three of which are among the top-four teams. In addition to North Carolina, the Irish will travel to No. 3 Portland on Sept. 7, in a rematch of Notre Dame's 3-2 win in the 1996 NCAA semifinals. The Irish and the Pilots have met in the NCAA championship in each of the last three seasons with Notre Dame winning all three one-goal games. Fourth-ranked Connecticut heads to Alumni Field for a BIG EAST matchup on Oct. 26. The Huskies last came to Notre Dame for the 1996 BIG EAST championship, a 4-3 Irish win.
Notre Dame travels to 10th-ranked Wisconsin on Oct. 14, and faces No. 16 Duke on Sept. 21, in the final game of the adidas/Lady Footlocker Classic.