Jeffrey Field will once again play host to two of the nation's best squads in 2015, according to the recently released National Soccer Coaches Association of America (NCSAA) preseason Top-25 polls. The Penn State women's team will begin their 2014 B1G title defense on August 21 against Hofstra ranked sixth in the nation, while the men will open against San Francisco on August 28 ranked 23rd.
Women's head coach Erica Walsh returns plenty of firepower from her 2014 team, perhaps most notably in World Cup goalscorer Raquel "Rocky" Rodriguez. The senior attacking midfielder netted the first ever World Cup goal for Costa Rica in the group stage against Spain, earning Las Ticas a 1-1 draw. Rodriguez will once again join up with Frannie Crouse and Mallory Weber in attack, a dynamic trio that produced 25 goals last year. Penn State will also feature four players – freshman goalkeeper Rose Chandler, sophomore midfielder Emily Ogle, and freshmen defenders Ellie Jean and Kaleigh Riehl – who trained with the U.S. Under-20 Women's National Team in July.
The men have their own dynamic attacker returning to the fold in reigning B1G Offensive Player of the Year Connor Maloney. After scoring a team-high 10 goals last year, Maloney is fresh off a stint at U.S. Soccer's U-23 College Discovery camp in Carson, CA. He is not Penn State's only notable returning player, as midfielders Brian James and Drew Klingenberg also come back from last year's squad. The Lions will have to replace Andrew Wolverton in goal, as the former number one has since moved on to a professional career with LA Galaxy, but Bob Warming has several has several capable options in junior netminder Evan Finney and ultra-talented incoming freshman Arie Ammann.