BIRMINGHAM, Ala.—For the first time in the Division III era, and the first season that they have been eligible to be ranked, the Birmingham-Southern women's soccer team has entered the NCAA South Atlantic Region rankings, coming in at No. 9.
BSC (10-4-2) wrapped up regular season play this past Sunday with a 0-0 tie against Centre College, who is ranked 22nd in the nation, to clinch second place in the SCAC standings and the second seed in the upcoming conference tournament, hosted by Birmingham-Southern beginning this Friday.
Four of BSC's opponents this season are currently ranked regionally, and two are ranked nationally: Lynchburg (No. 2 in region, No. 12 in nation), who the Panthers defeated 2-1 early in the season, Roanoke (No. 6 in region), Emory (No. 1 in region, No. 5 in nation), and Centre (No. 4 in Great Lakes Region, No. 22 in nation).
"I am proud for the girls that their hard work has been recognized by the NCAA committee," Head Coach Benji Walton said. "Our results have put us in a good position, but by no means is this the finish line for our program. We have a very tough tournament coming up this weekend and all of our energy is focused on Saturday's game as we know we are in for a very tough match against a quality opponent.
"Our motto from day one has been one day at a time, so as rewarding as this is, it doesn't change our approach towards the next game," Walton continued. "I hope everyone who calls themselves a Panther will come out and cheer on these girls and our men's team this weekend and see the hard work that these kids put forth as a team."
As the second seed in the tournament this weekend, the Panthers have a first-round bye and will face the winner of the game between third-seeded Centre and sixth-seeded Sewanee on Saturday at 2:30 p.m.