Tabor football picked to win KCAC title


Preseason coaches’ polls for all fall KCAC sports have been released. Results of the polls for football, volleyball, cross country and soccer follow.

Football—The Tabor College Bluejays topped both the 2013 KCAC football preseason coaches’ and media polls, following the KCAC Football Media Day Aug. 7.

Tabor, ranked 18th in the NAIA Football Coaches’ Spring Top 25 poll, landed first place in the coaches’ poll with four first place votes and 74 total votes.

Ottawa, ranked 16th in the Top 25 poll, came in a close second, with four first-place votes and 72 total votes.

Friends (70 total votes) and Kansas Wesleyan (54 total votes) each received one first place vote.

The coaches’ poll was rounded out by Saint Mary (44 votes), McPherson (41), Sterling (33), Bethany (27), Southwestern (24) and Bethel (11).

In the media poll, Tabor received 11 first-place votes and 166 total votes ahead of Ottawa with seven and 163.

Friends came in third with 149 total votes, followed by Kansas Wesleyan (102), McPher­son (95), Saint Mary (91), Bethany (84), Sterling (62), Southwestern (56) and Bethel (22).

Tabor ended last season with an 8-2 overall record, 7-1 in the conference, to finish second in the KCAC behind Ottawa at 8-1.

Tabor coach Mike Gardner was named KCAC Coach of the Year last season, while Billy Hickman earned Assistant Coach of the Year honors.

The Bluejays return three first-team and two second-team All-KCAC athletes this season.

Four Tabor athletes have been named to the 2013 preseason team: senior running back James Monroe, junior quarterback Simon McKee, senior linebacker Nik France and senior defensive lineman Terach Antoine.

Tabor is scheduled to open the 2013 season Sept. 7 at Nebraska Wesleyan University and will host its first home game Sept. 14 against MidAmerica Nazarene at 7 p.m.

Conference play will begin Sept. 21 when Tabor hosts University of Saint Mary at 7 p.m.

Volleyball—The Tabor College volleyball team sits in second place in the 2013 Preseason KCAC Volleyball Coaches’ Poll conducted at the KCAC Sport Management Conference at Southwestern.

The Bluejays—who received two first-place votes—finished with a total of 69 points behind Kansas Wesleyan at 77, who received five first-place votes. Ottawa came in third with 64 points and three first-place votes.

Tabor ended last season with a 12-6 KCAC record, 18-10 overall.

Point totals for the additional KCAC schools in the coaches’ poll are: Friends (62), Sterling (49), McPherson (30), Bethel (27), Saint Mary (26), Bethany (25) and Southwestern (21).

Tabor is scheduled to open the season at the Northwestern Tournament in Orange City, Iowa Aug. 23 and will play its first home game against Southwestern Sept. 4.

Cross Country—The Tabor men’s cross country team has been selected to finish fourth behind Southwestern, Saint Mary and Friends. Rounding out the men’s poll were Kansas Wesleyan in fifth followed by Bethany, Ottawa, McPherson, Sterling and Bethel.

The Tabor women, meanwhile, were selected to finish second behind Friends.

Brielle Lund returns for the Tabor women. Lund was last season’s KCAC champion and went on to finish 81st in a field of 320 at the NAIA meet.

Rounding out the women’s poll were Southwestern, McPherson, Kansas Wesleyan, Ottawa, Saint Mary, Bethany, Bethel and Sterling.

Both teams will open their season at Augusta Sept. 7.

Soccer—The soccer coaches’ polls were also conducted at the KCAC Sport Management Conference at Southwestern.

The Tabor men’s soccer team was named preseason number three.

The Bluejays received two first-place votes and 70 total votes to come in third behind Kansas Wesleyan (four first-place, 76 total) and McPherson (four, 73). Rounding out the poll were: Friends (48 total votes), Bethany (47), Ottawa (46), Sterling (28), Saint Mary (26), Southwestern (18) and Bethel (18).

Last season, Tabor posted a 13-7 overall record, 7-2 in the KCAC to earn second place in the conference.

The Tabor women, meanwhile, were picked to come in seventh with 39 total votes.

Kansas Wesleyan topped the poll with six first-place votes and 76 total votes, followed by Ottawa with four first-place and 73 total votes. Sterling was third at 61, followed by McPherson (56), Southwestern (50), Saint Mary (39), Tabor (39), Bethany (27), Friends (19) and Bethel (10).

Last season, Tabor posted a 4-5 KCAC record, 9-9 overall.

The Tabor men are scheduled to open against Independence Community College at home Aug. 21, while the women will host Indepen­dence the following day.


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