The Saint Joseph’s field hockey team is ranked 20th in the Division I Preseason Coaches Poll released by the National Field Hockey Coaches Association on Tuesday afternoon. It marks the sixth consecutive season that the Hawks have been ranked in the NFHCA Coaches Poll.
SJU was ranked in 35 consecutive polls between 2017 and 2021 before slipping out of the rankings late in the COVID 19-altered Spring 2021 season. In both 2018 and 2019, the Hawks reached #10 in the national rankings, the program’s highest-ever ranking.
Eight of the Hawks’ scheduled opponents for the upcoming campaign are ranked in the preseason poll, highlighted by top-ranked North Carolina visiting Hawk Hill on September 10. The Hawks will visit ninth-ranked Maryland on Sunday, August 29, and will head to #16 Penn State a week later. After hosting the three-time defending national champion Tar Heels, SJU will welcome 15th-ranked Rutgers two days later before opening conference play at #23 VCU on September 24. Delaware, ranked 17th, will visit SJU on October 1, while the Hawks will head to seventh-ranked Boston College on October 17. Finally, the Hawks close out the regular season at Ellen Ryan Field against #22 Ohio State on October 31.
Saint Joseph’s opens its 2021 fall campaign at home against Fairfield on Friday.