In early August, SMU’s Rikki Clarke, Shelby Redman, and Courtney Smith were recognized as Preseason First Team All-Conference athletes by CollegeSportsMadness.com.
After having a solid 2012 outing, many of the returning Mustangs are expected to expand on last season’s strong performance during the School’s inaugural American Athletic Conference campaign.
Redman, a junior forward, made the Second Team All-Conference squad (C-USA) and was a primary scoring weapon for SMU last season and should continue to be a scoring threat this year. She tallied nine goals in 2012 (fourth in Conference-USA and tied for first on SMU). Redman led SMU in scoring with 25 points, a total good enough for the third-highest total in C-USA.
Clarke, a junior midfielder, had two game-winning goals last season and finished fourth on the team in points with 12. Clarke also received second team All-C-USA honors.
Smith is entering her senior year on the Hilltop and should be taking on more of a leadership role this season. Last year, she led the team in assists with 10. Her assist total tied for the C-USA lead and ranked 20th in the NCAA. Smith earned Third Team All-C-USA recognition and started all 21 games for the Mustangs.
While Smith’s contributions to the team were undervalued by C-USA it appears they are not by the AAC, and deservedly so.
The Mustangs will rely on Clarke, Smith and Redman’s consistency and combined offensive pressure to spearhead their scoring attack.
The honors awarded to the trio by the AAC should be the first of many the team will receive by the end of the 2013 season.