UMass Picked To Finish Fourth In Atlantic 10 Preseason Poll
Jan. 29, 2014
The Massachusetts softball team was picked to finish fourth in the Atlantic 10 Conference in a preseason vote of the league's head coaches as announced on Wednesday.
The Minutewomen are entering their first season under the direction of longtime assistant and current interim head coach Kristi Stefanoni. Other new members of the coaching staff include Danielle Henderson and Staci Ramsey.
UMass welcomes back 14 letterwinners and five starters from a year ago, while adding six freshmen.
The 2014 season gets underway on Feb. 14, with a doubleheader against Mississippi State and Maryland at the FAU Kickoff Classic in Boca Raton, Fla. Conference play begins at Saint Louis on March 22.
The Atlantic 10 Championship will be held at Bahoshy Field in Bronx, N.Y., May 7-10.
Complete release from the Atlantic 10
NEWPORT NEWS, Va. - Reining Atlantic 10 Conference Softball Champion Fordham has been predicted to win the 2014 A-10 Championship, according to the preseason poll conducted by the league's 10 head coaches.
The Rams finished the 2013 season with an overall record of 36-23 and a conference record of 15-7. The Rams, winners of two of the last three A-10 championships, defeated top-seeded Saint Joseph's in last year's A-10 championship to capture the 2013 conference title. Leading the way for Fordham is returning first team All-Conference performer junior infielder Kayla Lombardo along with second team All-Conference performers senior catcher Gabby Luety and senior infielder Elise Fortier. In 2013, Fortier broke several Fordham school records including home runs (20), runs scored (61), walks (43) and slugging percentage (.808).
There was a tie for second in the preseason poll between George Washington and Saint Joseph's. The Colonials are led by senior pitcher Courtney Martin, a returning first team All-Conference performer. Martin won 14 games for the Colonials in addition to striking out 170 in 193.2 innings last season. The Hawks are led by returning first team All-Conference performer and reigning A-10 Rookie of the Year, Sarah Yoos. Yoos finished her freshman campaign batting .375 along with three home runs and 33 RBI.
Massachusetts took the fourth spot in the preseason poll, followed by Saint Louis (fifth), Dayton (sixth), George Mason (seventh), St. Bonaventure (eighth), La Salle (ninth), and Rhode Island (10th).
The 2014 Atlantic 10 Softball Championship will be hosted by Fordham University May 7-10 at the Murphy Athletic Complex in Bronx, N.Y.
2014 Softball Predicted Order of Finish
(2013 Overall Finish; A-10 Record in parentheses)