The Southern Oregon University men’s soccer team didn’t take long to establish itself among the best in the Cascade Conference, and coaches around the circuit expect more of the same from the Raiders in 2018.
Entering the program’s fourth season, SOU will defend its CCC title as the No. 3 pick in the conference coaches’ preseason poll. Rocky Mountain (Mont.) — which last year shared the regular-season crown with the Raiders and has claimed at least a piece of it every year since joining the CCC in 2015 — topped the poll with 12 of 14 first-place votes. Corban, picked second, and SOU received one first-place vote apiece.
After coming a win short of the title in 2016, the Raiders started last year with an 0-5 preseason but went on to go 11-1-1 in CCC play and defeated Corban in the conference tournament championship game. Their reward was the team’s first berth the NAIA National Tournament, where they fell at Georgia Gwinnet in the first round.
This fall’s roster will look similar, with nine returning starters and 21 back overall, but it will be guided by first-year head coach Davie Carmichael.
His team will be on display for the first time in a couple scrimmages, including a date at Oregon State at 4 p.m. Tuesday. The Raiders’ first counter will be at home, Aug. 24 against Menlo (Calif.), and the CCC slate begins Sept. 14 at Raider Stadium against Rocky.
Eastern favored, Raiders 6th in CCC women’s soccer poll
The Cascade Conference women’s soccer coaches picked Southern Oregon University to finish sixth in a preseason poll released Tuesday by the league office.
Eastern Oregon, the CCC’s defending regular-season and tournament champion after winning both for the first time in 2017, was selected to repeat with 10 of the 13 first-place votes. Corban is second, Rocky Mountain (Mont.) and Northwest (Wash.) are third, and Oregon Tech is fifth in the poll.
The Raiders are two seasons removed from capturing their first conference crown and went 7-4 in CCC play last season, settling in at fifth in the standings, despite playing seven of their 11 conference games on the road. They went 10-7-1 overall and were eliminated by Corban in penalty kicks in the first round of the CCC tournament.
SOU has advanced to the postseason eight years in a row and finished no worse than fifth since 2007.
Sixth-year head coach Jenni Rosenberg’s latest roster includes eight players who started 12 or more games in 2017, including All-CCC defender Daisy Cervantes and honorable-mention picks Maddy Spangler and Makena Totushek — all seniors. The Raiders return 20 individuals in total; five freshmen and two transfers make up their class of newcomers.
SOU’s opener is a nonleague affair on Aug. 23 at Oregon Tech. The first home game is scheduled for Sept. 7 against Menlo (Calif.).