(SU ATHLETICS) - Following its 2-0 win at No. 3 Princeton on Sunday, the Syracuse field hockey team (9-0) is ranked No. 1 in the country for the first time since 2008 in the Penn Monto/NFHCA Division I Coaches Poll released on Tuesday.
The Orange had been ranked No. 2 for three straight weeks following its 1-0 overtime win over then-No. 2 North Carolina on Sept. 1, but head coach Ange Bradley's squad takes over the top spot from those same Tar Heels after knocking another top-three opponent from the ranks of the unbeaten with a 2-0 win at No. 3 Princeton on Sunday.
"It is a nice recognition from the coaching community," Bradley said. "It is an honor to what we have done so far this season, but it is not where you start, it is where you finish. That is our motto and focus this year."
Syracuse garnered 932 total points, including 25 first-place votes in this week's poll. The Orange is followed by No. 2 North Carolina (9-1) with 892 points and 22 first-place votes, No. 3 Princeton (7-1) with 822 points and No. 4 Maryland (7-1) with 784 points.
No. 5 Connecticut (737 points), the only other undefeated team in the country at 9-0, received one first-place votes. The Orange and Huskies will meet on the last day of the regular season, Oct. 27, at J.S. Coyne Stadium.
It is the Orange field hockey team's first No. 1 ranking since Oct. 14, 2008 when it reached the top spot for the first time in program history when it was 14-0 and the only undefeated team in the country. Syracuse finished that season 22-2 overall with a Final Four appearance.
The last Syracuse program to be ranked No. 1 in a major poll was men's basketball holding the top spot in both the Associated Press and USA Today/ESPN polls from Dec. 12, 2011 to Jan. 16, 2012.
Besides men's basketball last season, the only other Syracuse program to be ranked No. 1 since field hockey's last No. 1 ranking in 2008 is men's lacrosse, which held the top spot in the United States Intercollegiate Lacrosse Association Poll for five weeks in 2009, five weeks in 2010 and nine weeks in 2011.
The Orange is home for two games this weekend, where it has won 32 straight games, hosting No. 25 Louisville (7-3) on Saturday at noon and Yale on Sunday at 2 p.m. As always, admission is free to Coyne Stadium.