Hofstra Tied for 22nd in ESPN/USA Softball Preseason Poll
Hempstead, N.Y.- The Hofstra softball program picked up another preseason accolade when the Pride was one of two teams picked 22nd in the ESPN.com/USA Softball top-25 poll, it was announced today.
Hofstra and Baylor were both chosen in the 22nd spot with 67 total points. The Pride ended last season ranked 17th. Defending national-champion Alabama was the top pick with 490 points and 13 first-place votes. Oklahoma came in second with 486 total points and was the only other school to receive first-place votes, notching seven.
Last week, Hofstra was selected 20th in the USA Today/NFCA top-25 poll. In the last poll of 2012, Hofstra was picked 16th in the NFCA rankings, marking the highest-ever final ranking for the program. In the new ESPN.com poll, Hofstra is the only school from the northeast region to make the top-25 list.
Under head coach Bill Edwards, the Pride enjoyed an unprecedented level of success last season, culminating with a three-game sweep to win the Los Angeles Regional and an appearance in the program's first-ever Super Regional.
Hofstra is coming off a 42-15 season, finishing just one win shy of reaching the Women's College World Series.
The Pride captured its ninth Colonial Athletic Association title in 11 seasons after going 22-0 against the league for the first undefeated conference performance in school history. After winning his fifth straight Coach of the Year distinction, Edwards then guided Hofstra to four NCAA Tournament wins overall to match the 2004 team for the most in one season.
Hofstra returns seven starters from last year's group, including senior pitcher/designated player Olivia Galati and NFCA All-Region selections Tessa Ziemba (senior) and Erin Trippi (sophomore).Hofstra will start the 2013 season on Feb. 15 against Arkansas at 10 a.m. in the first of five games in the Florida State Invitational in Tallahassee, Fla.