UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa (WTAJ) — For the 19th consecutive season, Penn State Women’s Soccer is the preseason favorite to win the Big Ten.  

Penelope Hocking, Payton Linnehan and Ally Schlegel find themselves on the Big Ten Players to watch. Hocking and Schlegel were also named to the United Soccer Coaches Players to Watch – Forwards list.  

The Lions return plenty of familiar faces to the roster alongside the number one recruiting class in the nation (per TopDrawerSoccer.com) and a handful of transfers.  

“We’ve a ton of experience,” said senior captain Maddie Myers. “We have transfers. We had a quality freshman class coming in. So I just think building on that, we can continue to look forward to Big Ten championships, to hopefully national championship, but also just focusing on one game at a time and hopefully producing results.” 

Last season, despite injuries, Penn State notched their 27th consecutive trip to the NCAA Tournament. The team defeated a talented USC (Calif.) in the second round on penalty kicks. The team would later fall to USC (S.C.) 2-0.  

The Nittany Lions open their season at home on Thursday, Aug. 18 at 7 p.m. against Georgetown.