Softball Picked Sixth In Pac-10 Preseason Coaches' Poll

Jan. 16, 2003

TEMPE, Ariz. - Arizona State University has been selected sixth by Conference softball coaches as the 2003 preseason poll was announced Thursday by the Pac-10 Office. UCLA, who the Sun Devils knocked off in last year's Women's College World Series, received the nod for first with the University of Arizona in second.

Washington finished third with 33 points, while California and Stanford were tied for fourth with 30. Rounding out the rest of the poll was Arizona State with 20 points, Oregon State with 14 and Oregon with seven.

In 2002, Arizona State posted a school record 46 wins while playing strong postseason ball, finishing third in the 2002 Women's College World Series. Head Coach Linda Wells, entering her 14th season at the helm, will have a new pitching staff for 2003 headlined by redshirt freshman Desiree Serrano. Wells will also have the services of first-team All-American Phelan Wright and All-Pac-10 performers Kara Brun and Kristin Farber.

The Pac-10 placed seven of its eight squads in the NCAA Tournament last season, with four teams advancing to the WCWS. For the second consecutive year (ninth time overall), two Pac-10 teams squared off in the National Championship game. Additionally, Pac-10 teams finished 1-2-3 in the final 2002 USA Today/NFCA poll, for a total of seven teams ranked in the top-25.

Arizona State's 2003 softball season begins on Friday, January 31 when they host Texas-San Antonio at 7:00 p.m. Pac-10 Conference play begins Friday, March 28 when Oregon comes to Tempe for a 7:00 p.m. first pitch.

Results of the poll are as follows. Seven points are awarded to the first-place vote, six points to the second-place vote, and so on. Coaches are not allowed to vote for their own team.

2003 PACIFIC-10 CONFERENCE SOFTBALL COACHES' PRESEASON POLL

School (First Place Votes) Points

1. UCLA (5) 46

2. Arizona (3) 44

3. Washington 33

4. California 30

Stanford 30

6. Arizona State 20

7. Oregon State 14

8. Oregon 7

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