Belles Picked to Finish Fourth in MIAA Preseason Poll

FREELAND, Mich. - The Saint Mary's lacrosse team was picked by Michigan Intercollegiate Athletic Association (MIAA) coaches to finish fourth in the 2017 preseason poll.

Saint Mary's and Kalamazoo each had 36 points in the poll to tie for fourth. It marks the highest preseason poll ranking for the Belles, who enter their fourth season as a varsity program. Saint Mary's finished tied for fourth place in the final league standings a season ago. Each of the team's three seasons has ended with the team finishing higher than predicted in the preseason poll - a trend the Belles aim to continue in 2017.

"The development and growth of this team in a short amount of time is due to the dedication and determination of our players, especially our seniors Shannon Weyer, Emilie Vanneste, Katlynn Dee, and Lauren Telford, who are founding members of our team," said head coach Amy Long. "With a strong junior class, experienced sophomores, and solid first-year players, we are excited to have our best season yet. Our goal continues to be to climb the MIAA ranks. We’re excited to continue to make improvements each week to have our most successful season in our program’s short history."

The Belles open their season with three games in Florida during the College's spring break. Saint Mary's kicks off the 2017 campaign on March 14 against fellow all-women's college Smith. The team opens their conference slate of competition on April 5 when they host Olivet.

2017 MIAA Women's Lacrosse Preseason Coaches Poll
1. Calvin - 61 points (5 first-place votes)
2. Albion - 56 points (3 first-place votes)
3. Hope - 50 points (1 first-place vote)
T4. Kalamazoo - 36 points
T4. Saint Mary's - 36 points
6. Adrian - 32 points
7. Alma - 29 points
8. Trine - 16 points
9. Olivet - 8 points