MORGANTOWN — The West Virginia University women’s soccer team is ranked No. 11 in the 2019 United Soccer Coaches Division I Women’s Preseason Ranking, as released on Tuesday.

The reigning Big 12 Tournament champions are the highest-ranked team in the conference. Baylor ranks No. 14, Texas sits at No. 19 and Texas Tech comes in at No. 22.

Defending National Champion Florida State claimed the No. 1 spot, while North Carolina, the reigning National Runner-Up, sits at No. 2. Stanford, UCLA and Southern California round out the top five.

In all, seven of the Mountaineers’ 2019 opponents are ranked in the poll: No. 3 Stanford, No. 6 Penn State, No. 7 Georgetown, No. 9 Virginia, No. 14 Baylor, No. 19 Texas and No. 22 Texas Tech.

The Mountaineers were ranked within the United Soccer Coaches poll throughout the 2018 season after opening the season at No. 9.

WVU opens the 2019 season against Duquesne on Friday, Aug. 23, with first kick at Dick Dlesk Soccer Stadium set for 7 p.m. ET.

The WVU soccer scarf ticket package is now on sale. The package includes a scarf and 10 tickets to be used at any women’s or men’s soccer match during the 2019 regular season. Packages are just $35 and are available while supplies last. To order, visit WVUgame.com or call 1-800-WVU-GAME.

——-

The West Virginia University men’s soccer team checked in at No. 23 in the 2019 United Soccer Coaches Division I Men’s Preseason Ranking, as released on Tuesday.

The Mountaineers are one of two Mid-American Conference schools ranked in the preseason poll. Akron, which finished as the 2018 national runner-up, also is featured, sitting at No. 3.

WVU appears in the preseason poll after finishing the 2018 season listed in the top 25 in each of the major poll’s final rankings. WVU finished as high as No. 17 by Soccer America, as well as No. 22 by United Soccer Coaches, No. 23 by TopDrawerSoccer.com and No. 24 by College Soccer News.

Defending National Champion Maryland earned the No. 1 spot, while Indiana ranks No. 2. Following Akron, No. 4 Wake Forest and No. 5 Stanford rounded out the top five. No. 6 North Carolina, No. 7 Michigan State, No. 8 Kentucky, No. 9 Notre Dame and No. 10 Duke also appeared in the top 10.

Seven seniors are set to guide the Mountaineers during the 2019 campaign. The squad is coming off a 14-win season and MAC regular-season championship. WVU, which finished a perfect 5-0 in conference play, also advanced to the second round of the NCAA Tournament for the first time since 2011.

West Virginia opens the 2019 slate on Friday, Aug. 30, at Monmouth. Kickoff in Monmouth, New Jersey, is set for 7 p.m. ET. The team’s home opener is set for Saturday, Sept. 7, against Wright State, with kickoff at Dick Dlesk Soccer Stadium scheduled for 7 p.m.

Single-game tickets, as well as the WVU soccer scarf package, are now on sale. The package includes a scarf and 10 tickets to be used at any regular-season men’s or women’s soccer match during the 2019 season. Packages are just $35 and are available while supplies last. To order, visit WVUGAME.com or call 1-800-WVU-GAME.

——-

The West Virginia University tennis coaching staff announced Wednesday that Kat Lyman will join the program for the 2018-19 season.

A native of Mount Pleasant, South Carolina, Lyman is rated as a four-star recruit, according to Tennisrecruiting.net, and reached her highest national ranking of No. 26 in June 2017. She checked in at No. 64 nationally, her highest ranking of 2019, in July. “We are excited to welcome Kat Lyman to the Mountaineer family,” coach Miha Lisac said. “Kat brings a wealth of experience from junior competitions, an impressive academic background, as well as a drive to become the best she can be on and off the courts as a part of our program. We are looking to have Kat as a building block for our program’s future.”

“Deciding to attend WVU was not a difficult decision for me,” Lyman said. “It was an ideal place where I will have the resources and capability to achieve my goals both athletically and academically. Being able to play Division I tennis in one of the best conferences in the country was something I dreamed of doing. Academically, WVU has an extremely wide variety of majors, so it offered every area I was interested in studying.”

A graduate of Oceanside Collegiate Academy, Lyman was ranked as the No. 5 player in South Carolina and No. 20 in the Southeast region in 2019.

Lyman began her junior tennis career at Wando High School in Mount Pleasant where she led the Warriors to a state championship in 2015-16 as a freshman. As a sophomore, she helped Wando High finish the season as the state runner up.

In 2016, Lyman won the United States Tennis Association (USTA) Southern Junior Tournament and was awarded the South Carolina Kimberly Hampton Award, given to the junior player who makes the most improvement in their game with consideration given to their improvement in state, section and national rankings.

She also won the Chick-fil-A Palmetto Championships, South Carolina’s junior qualifying tournament, and advanced to the USTA Southern Junior Tournament for the second consecutive year in 2017.

Prior to her junior year, Lyman transferred to Oceanside Collegiate Academy. As a senior, she went undefeated and helped the Landsharks secure a Class AA state runner-up finish in 2018-19. As a result, Lyman was named The Post and Courier All-Lowcountry Player of the Year and the Moultrie News Best Prep Sports Player of the Year. She was also named to the All-Lowcountry Girls Tennis Team and the South Carolina All-State Girls Tennis Team.

——-

The West Virginia University volleyball team will play a pair of Big 12 matches on ESPNU this fall.

West Virginia’s match against Texas Tech on Wednesday, Sept. 25, will air on ESPNU at 7 p.m. ET. The Mountaineers and the Red Raiders will meet for the 17th time overall and the 15th time in league play since WVU joined the Big 12 in 2012. The all-time series is knotted at eight wins apiece, with the two teams splitting the series in 2018. West Virginia won its most recent meeting, defeating Texas Tech in four sets on Oct. 24, 2018, in Morgantown. Of note, WVU is 3-4 against TTU in Lubbock.

Another trip to the Lonestar State also will be televised, as the Mountaineers’ Nov. 3 contest at Texas will be broadcasted live on ESPNU starting at 1 p.m. ET. The first meeting between the two squads came in August of 2012 and was WVU’s first-ever Big 12 contest. The Longhorns are 14-0 in the series.

The Mountaineers will begin their 2019 season on Friday, returning to the court for preseason practices at the WVU Coliseum. West Virginia opens the season with three consecutive weekends on the road, starting with the Delaware Classic in Newark, Delaware, on Aug. 30-31. While in Delaware, WVU will take on host Delaware on Aug. 30, followed by Coppin State and Binghamton on Aug. 31.