Washington Softball Ranked Fifth In USA Today/NFCA Top 25 Poll

Jan. 29, 2004

SEATTLE- The Washington softball team earned the No. 5 ranking in the USA Today/National Fastpitch Coaches Association (NFCA) preseason top 25 poll. The Huskies are one of four Pac-10 teams ranked in the top five, headlined by No. 1 UCLA, No. 2 Arizona and No. 3 California. Also appearing in the top five is No. 4 Oklahoma, who Washington defeated in the first round of the 2003 Women's College World Series.

Washington will endure an intense tournament schedule to open the season, facing No. 1 UCLA in just its third game of the season, as well as No. 10 Texas, No. 13 CSU Fullerton, No. 17 Iowa, No. 18 Texas A&M, No. 19 Florida State and No. 23 Fresno State.

The Huskies will then battle for its third Pac-10 title with six other teams ranked in the top 25. Joining UCLA, Arizona, California and UW on the list is No. 15 Stanford, No. 16 Oregon and No. 20 Arizona State. Oregon State rounds out the conference opponents as it received 23 points to rank five slots out of the top 25.

Washington returns a strong line-up for the 2004 season, headlined by All-American pitcher Tia Bollinger and All-American catcher Kristen Rivera. The Huskies also return seven position players from last year's squad that went 47-16-1 and finished tied for fifth at the College World Series. UW opens the season next week at the Long Beach State Tournament. The Huskies will face San Diego State and Long Beach State on February 6.

USA Today/NFCA Top 25 Poll

Rank Team Record Pts
1 UCLA (26) 54-7 674
2 Arizona 56-7 632
3 California (1) 49-20 629
4 Oklahoma 47-14 535
5 Washington 47-16-1 515
6 Alabama 49-21 514
7 Georgia 57-14 455
8 Nebraska 39-17 439
9 Louisiana-Lafayette 47-11 425
10 Michigan 44-16 419
10 Texas 49-9 419
12 DePaul 48-7-1 375
13 Cal State Fullerton 41-15 329
14 LSU 50-18 311
15 Stanford 41-26 262
16 Oregon 37-19 258
17 Iowa 44-15 242
18 Texas A&M 38-22 208
19 Florida State 46-11 198
20 Arizona State 32-25 195
21 Oklahoma State 39-15 184
22 South Carolina 39-19 90
23 Fresno State 36-22 80
24 Southern Illinois 39-14 77
25 Michigan State 40-19 72

Others receiving votes: South Florida 50, Tennessee 39, Florida 29, Northwestern 29, Texas State-San Marcos 25, Oregon State 23, Massachusetts 8, Illinois 6, Minnesota 5, Notre Dame 4, Hawaii 4, Mississippi State 3, Florida Atlantic 3.

Dropped out: No. 25 South Florida.

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