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Winning streak pushes football team to top of fall 2016 sports rankings


This is the second edition of the fall sports rankings from The Brown and White sports section. This list is the editors’ ranking of the seven varsity Lehigh fall sports based on record, strength of schedule and recent results. The last edition of the rankings can be read here.

1. Football (5-2, 2-0 Patriot) +2

The Lehigh football team has been on a tear as of late. The Mountain Hawks have notched five straight wins and have jumped to a 2-0 start in the Patriot League. The team’s recent success has garnered some national attention, as Lehigh was ranked #24 in the most recent FCS Athlon poll. One of its Patriot League wins came convincingly against Colgate University, the team tabbed as the preseason favorite to win the conference. The Hawks have been anchored by their offense, which ranks top 10 in the country in several categories. The team leapfrogged men’s cross country and women’s soccer with its recent play.

2. Women’s soccer (9-4-2, 3-3-1 Patriot) -1

The women’s soccer team drops a spot after struggling a bit in Patriot League play. The team has won just twice in its last five matches, but got back on track with a win Wednesday night against Lafayette. Now fourth in the Patriot League, the team will have to keep winning in the conference to remain high in the rankings.

3. Men’s cross country -1

The team faced some of the top teams in the country in both the Paul Short Run (22nd of 38) and the prestigious Pre-National Invitational (38th of 41). The team came in first in the Leopard Invitational and is still ranked 11th in the Mid-Atlantic region. Lehigh is listed higher among all regional rankings than all but two Patriot League teams. Despite similar results recently, the men’s team remains higher than the women’s team in the rankings due to previous results.

4. Volleyball (11-12, 6-3 Patriot) -1

After tying for third last rankings, the volleyball team falls to fourth this edition. It is 3-3 in the Patriot League since then and is in fourth in the conference, winning just one combined set against the three teams ahead of it in the league. Still, the Hawks have won four of their last five matches including a win over 15-5 Navy. 

5. Women’s cross country

Like the men’s cross country team, the women’s team finished low in the Penn State Nationals, but it was also against some top teams in the country. The women’s cross country team is also 11th in the Mid-Atlantic region and is second among Patriot League teams in regional rankings. Sophomore Maura Henderson has continued her dominant season, finishing 36th overall in the Penn State Nationals, but the team lacks consistency.

6. Field hockey (5-10, 2-3 Patriot) +1

After starting off the season just 1-8, the team pulled off four straight wins, its longest winning streak since 1986. Lehigh has only two games left in the season, including its last league game against Lafayette on Oct. 28. The team is in fifth place of seven teams in the conference.

7. Men’s soccer (5-8-1, 1-4 Patriot) -1

After winning the Patriot League last year, the men’s soccer team has struggled in league play, scoring more than a goal just once in its five league games this season. However, the team still has four league games left with a chance to bounce back in the standings. Until then, the men’s soccer team falls to the bottom of The Brown and White‘s Lehigh fall sports rankings.

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