WINONA LAKE – Tuesday marked a historic milestone for the Grace College women’s soccer team.
The Lady Lancers were ranked No. 22 in the NAIA Coaches’ Top 25 Poll, marking Grace’s first ranking in the program’s 19-year history.
Grace is receiving 192 votes in the poll thanks to an 8-3-2 record this fall. The Lady Lancers beat then-No. 21 Mt. Vernon Nazarene and nearly upset No. 10 Spring Arbor last week to jump into the top 25.
“Grace as a program watches these ratings come and go, but we don’t put a ton of emphasis on them within our camp,” said Grace head coach Michael Voss. “We focus on scheduling the toughest nonleague opponents we can get from California to Kansas to Arkansas to Georgia. This has grown us and shaped our futbol, but it has not always favored us in these polls. We’re honored to be in the poll and glad the national raters think highly of our team. Our goal is to be competitive nationally, so this is confirmation that possession-attacking futbol is headed in the right direction.”
Grace has played three teams currently ranked in the top 25, including No. 10 Spring Arbor, No. 21 Olivet Nazarene and No. 24 Mt. Vernon Nazarene.
The Lady Lancers are seeking their fourth-straight appearance to a national tournament in 2014. Grace made it to NCCAA Nationals the past three seasons; the Lady Lancers are seeking their first trip to NAIA Nationals this fall.
Grace will play its first game as a ranked team Tuesday night at Goshen. On Saturday Grace will host Bethel at 7 p.m.