Sophomore striker Ashley Cottrell leads Midwestern State into the 2013 campaign tabbed as the Lone Star Conference Preseason Offensive Player of the Year.
A group of the league's coaches, sports information directors and selected media picked the Mustangs to finish second in the annual preseason poll released Wednesday afternoon by league officials.
Cottrell, the reigning LSC Freshman of the Year, took a total of 15 shots last season, but made each of the count as she tallied six of her team-high seven goals during a five-game stretch from Oct. 7-21 on her way to earning conference first-team honors.
Texas Woman's University junior Lindsey Sisco (7-9-1, 1.46 GAA, 4 shutouts) earned preseason top goalkeeper honors, while Angelo State junior Caitlyn Conaway and TWU sophomore Sarah Deeb shared top defensive mention.
Midwestern State returns 11 letter winners including just four players in senior forward Mickey Brown (2 goals), senior defender Anna Molen as well as sophomore midfielders Alex Edwards and Morgan Hannon who started at least half of the contests for the Mustangs last season. The Mustangs fought injuries by sending 20 different starters on the pitch while posting a 7-10-3 mark last season.
MSU received three first-place votes to amass 75 points and were picked just behind West Texas A&M as the defending LSC champion Lady Buffs claimed 10 first-place votes to total 84 points.
Voters tipped the race to be wide open this season as five of the six squads received a top vote heading into the 2013 campaign with Angelo State (1 first-place vote, 71 points), Texas A&M-Commerce (1 first-place vote, 42 points), Texas Woman's (1 first-place vote, 41 points) and Eastern New Mexico (23 points) rounding out the poll.
Midwestern State opens the season on the road against Colorado Mesa on Friday, Sep. 6 at 8 p.m. before taking on Fort Lewis (Colo.) Sunday, Sep. 8 at 1 p.m. in Grand Junction.
Preseason Offensive Player of the Year
Ashley Cottrell, Midwestern State
Preseason Defensive Players of the Year
Caitlyn Conaway, Angelo State
Sarah Deeb, Texas Woman's
Preseason Goalkeeper of the Year
Lindsey Sisco, Texas Woman's
Predicted Order of Finish