The Redlands men's soccer team was selected to finish first in the 2018 Southern California Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (SCIAC) Preseason Poll as voted on by member head coaches.
Redlands received seven first place votes and a pair of second place votes en route to 79 points in the conference preseason ranking. The Bulldogs finished the 2017 campaign with a 14-4-2 overall record, and a 12-0-2 mark in SCIAC play on their way to securing the top seed in the SCIAC Postseason Tournament.
Redlands won six of its final eight matches of the 2017 regular season, and picked up a 3-0 victory over Pomona-Pitzer in the semifinals of the SCIAC Tournament. The Bulldogs then fell to second-seeded California Lutheran, 2-1 in double overtime in the tournament title match.
Chapman, which finished last year's slate 9-7-3 overall, 9-4-1 in conference action, clinched the third seed in the tournament and fell to the Kingsmen, 3-1 in the semifinals. The Panthers received 66 points in the preseason vote ahead of the 2018 season, and are slotted to finish second in the conference.
Cal Lutheran - the 2017 SCIAC Tournament champion - finished its memorable 2017 campaign 13-5-2 overall, 9-3-2 in league play, and earned the conference's automatic bid to the NCAA Division III Championship. The Kingsmen traveled to St. Paul, Minn. where they fell to Loras, 4-2 in the first round of the national tournament. Cal Lutheran earned 52 points in the 2018 preseason poll and are picked to finish third this season.
After finishing fourth in the standings a year ago with a record of 8-8-2 overall, 7-5-2 in the SCIAC, the Sagehens were voted to finish fourth in the league in 2018. Pomona-Pitzer notched 51 points in the voting, one behind Cal Lutheran, and one ahead of Occidental's 50 points. The Tigers placed fifth a year ago with a 9-8-1 overall ledger, 7-7-0 in SCIAC play.
Claremont-Mudd-Scipps (CMS) registered 37 points in this year's preseason vote and is tabbed to finish sixth, while Whittier logged 33 points and is voted to finish seventh. La Verne was picked to finish in eighth place with 27 points, while Caltech is slotted to finish ninth with 10 points.
The regular season starts Friday, August 31 as eight of the nine SCIAC teams are in action beginning with a non-conference tilt between Chapman Whitman at 12 p.m., and concluding with a non-league encounter between Pomona-Pitzer and UC Santa Cruz at 7:30 p.m.
2018 SCIAC Preseason Poll
1. Redlands (7) - 79 points
2. Chapman (2) - 66 points
3. Cal Lutheran - 52 points
4. Pomona-Pitzer - 51 points
5. Occidental - 50 points
6. CMS - 37 points
7. Whittier - 33 points
8. La Verne - 27 points
9. Caltech - 10 points