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Hicksville’s Courtney Breen Leads Hofstra Women’s Soccer in 2011

The defending regular season champion Hofstra Women’s Soccer team was picked to finish second in the 12-team Colonial Athletic Association in 2011 in a vote of the league’s coaches, it was announced recently.

James Madison, which finished second in the regular season last year before defeating Hofstra in the CAA championship game, was picked to finish first, capturing seven of the 12 first place votes. Hofstra was second in overall points with two first-place votes, while William & Mary finished third overall and had three first-place votes. 

The Pride returns five of its 11 starters from a team that went 11-0 in CAA play in 2011 and 19-3 overall, setting school records for wins, conference wins and consecutive wins (18). Hofstra must replace its top two scorers in CAA Player of the Year and third-team All-American midfielder Tiffany Yovino and All-CAA forward Salma Tarik, who both had 12 goals and two assists last year. Defender Dana Bergstrom, a second-team All-CAA selection last year, also graduated after leading the Pride in assists with 10. 

Senior forward Laura Greene (Holbrook) is the top-returning scorer for the Pride in 2011, after tallying six goals and seven assists in 2010. Two All-CAA midfielders are also back in seniors Courtney Breen (Hicksville,) and Brittany Butts (Massapequa Park), who have been starting in the midfield together for their entire careers. Junior defenders Brooke Bendernagel (Smithtown) and Danielle Murino (Bohemia) round out the returning starters for the Pride this season. 

Hofstra became the first team to go undefeated and untied in the CAA since William & Mary was 8-0 in 1998 before advancing to the second round of the NCAA Tournament with a win over Connecticut.

Hofstra opens its 2011 campaign with a home game against Fairfield on Friday, Aug. 26 at 4:30 p.m. before meeting Boston College on Sunday, Aug. 28 at 1 p.m. Boston College reached the Women’s College Cup last year before falling in the national semifinals to Stanford, after giving Hofstra two of its three losses, including a 3-1 defeat in the second round of the NCAA Tournament.