The Valparaiso University softball team has been picked to finish in third place in the Horizon League standings for the 2015 season in preseason polling by the league’s head coaches.
The top of the polling was tight, with Wright State claiming the top spot with 40 points despite earning just one first-place vote. Green Bay, last season’s champion, finished with 38 points and three first-place votes, while the Crusaders picked up two first-place votes and 37 points to finish in third position in the poll. Youngstown State recorded the other two first-place votes and finished in fourth place with 31 points, while Cleveland State (29), UIC (27), Oakland (15) and Detroit (7) rounded out the polling.
Valpo returns 10 letterwinners – including five starters in the field and all three starting pitchers - from last year’s squad, which reached the Horizon League Championship title game for a third consecutive year. First-year head coach Kate Stake also welcomes eight freshmen to the fold this season. Play opens up for the Crusaders this weekend at the Mercer Invitational from Macon, Ga.