Tue August 15, 2023

By Lance Hawley

Six Hogs Named to SEC Preseason Watch List

Fuller Birch

FAYETTEVILLE –  No. 8 Arkansas soccer had six Razorbacks named to the SEC Preseason Watch List, the league announced Tuesday. 

Graduates Bea Franklin and Anna Podojil, seniors Kiley Dulaney, Ellie Podojil and Ava Tankersley and sophomore Makenzie Malham were each named players to watch this season. It’s Anna Podojil’s fourth straight appearance on the list, followed by Franklin’s and Ellie Podojil’s second. Tankersley, Dulaney and Malham joined the list for the first time in their careers. 

Franklin, a midfielder, enters the 2023 season after starting in all 22 matches last fall. She netted five goals and notched one assist to earn Second Team All-SEC honors. In May, Franklin graduated with a degree in finance and elected to return for her final year of eligibility. 

Anna Podojil, the most decorated player in program history, is coming off a historic season in which she set the school’s goals, points and game-winning goals records. She was named first-team All-SEC for the fourth time in her career and earned her fourth United Soccer Coaches All-America honor. 

Dulaney returns to the pitch after she missed her junior season due to injury. The forward last saw action in 2021 and started in 17 matches in the season Arkansas last won the SEC regular season title. She netted three goals and assisted in four for a total of 1,246 minutes played. 

Ellie Podojil, another one of the Hogs’ second-team All-SEC honorees from 2022, finished her junior campaign with three goals, including one in Arkansas’ Elite 8 run. A mainstay in the midfield last season, Podojil logged 1,670 minutes and notched four assists. 

Tankersley, a key contributor to Arkansas’ attack, led last year’s squad with 12 assists, good for the sixth-most nationally. She led the SEC in shot-on-goal percentage (.627) and found the back of the net nine times. Tankersley was named SEC Offensive Player of the Week and earned second-team All-SEC honors for the first time in her career. 

Malham, the youngest of the Razorbacks’ players to watch, was named to the SEC All-Freshman team in her first season and finished the year as the No. 49 ranked freshman in the country by TopDrawerSoccer. She started in 17 of 18 matches played and both of her goals were game-winners. 

Earlier this week, Arkansas was picked as the preseason favorite to win the SEC title by the league’s head coaches. 

Arkansas opens the 2023 season on Thursday, Aug. 17, at home against Arkansas State. Kickoff is set for 6 p.m. and the match will be streamed on SEC Network+. Season and single-game tickets can be purchased here

For more information on Arkansas Soccer, follow @RazorbackSoccer on Twitter.