The Toledo women’s soccer team has been picked as the overwhelming favorite to capture the 2012 Mid-American Conference West Division and Tournament titles for a third-consecutive season, according to a coaches’ poll released by the league office Thursday.
The two-time reigning MAC regular-season champion Rockets took all but one vote in the West Division balloting (69 votes) to finish ahead of Central Michigan (59 votes), Western Michigan (47 votes), Ball State (33 votes), Eastern Michigan (30 votes) and Northern Illinois (14 votes).
In the East Division, Kent State was tabbed to repeat as division champ after garnering 64 votes. Behind the Golden Flashes in the division were Miami (52 votes), Buffalo (51 votes), Akron (35 votes), Ohio (33 votes) and Bowling Green (17 votes).
UT was also the choice to claim a MAC-record fifth tourney title with five votes. The Chippewas and Broncos were the only other schools to receive multiple votes in the tournament voting with three, while Ball State received one vote.
The Midnight Blue and Gold return 18 letterwinners from last year’s record-setting squad that posted a 14-7-2 overall mark, including a 9-1-1 MAC record, to successfully defend its league regular-season championship and capture another tourney crown.
UT’s conference ledger over the last five seasons is a stellar 41-10-4 (.782), best in the league.
Toledo commences its regular season at Big Ten member Purdue Friday, Aug. 17. The opening whistle is slated for 7 p.m. at the Varsity Soccer Complex.
Two days later, the Rockets host Ohio Valley Conference participant Belmont at 1:05 p.m. at Scott Park Soccer Field.
Follow the action here.