Softball Ranked 13th In USA Today/NFCA Top 25 Poll
Jan. 30, 2006
SEATTLE-- The Washington softball team earned the No. 13 ranking in the USA Today/National Fastpitch Coaches Association preseason top 25 poll. The Huskies return seven starters from the 2005 squad, including five All-Pac-10 players. Last season, Washington fell one win shy of advancing to the program's eighth Women's College World Series, dropping a three-game series to eventual national champion Michigan in Ann Arbor.
The Huskies are one of seven Pac-10 teams ranked in the top 25, including No. 2 UCLA, No. 5 Arizona, No. 7 Stanford, No. 8 California, No. 15 Oregon State and No. 22 Oregon. Arizona State also received votes, sitting four spots out of the poll.
Washington will endure a tough tournament schedule to open the year, facing six ranked opponents and four others that received votes.
The Huskies will open the season Feb. 10-12 at the Alexis Resort Kickoff in Las Vegas where they will face No. 12 Oklahoma and Long Beach State and UNLV, who both received votes in the preseason poll.
Washington will the face tournament host LSU, another vote-receiving team, at the LSU Tiger Classic in Baton Rouge, La., Feb. 17-19. UW will also go up against No. 11 Baylor and Mississippi State, who received votes, at the Compass Invitational in Waco, Texas.
The Huskies will compete against two top-20 teams at the Fresno State Bulldog Classic, Mar. 10-12, including host and No. 20 Fresno State and No. 14 DePaul.
Washington's biggest test will come in the last preconference tournament, the Judy Garman Classic, Mar. 16-19, in Fullerton, Calif. The Huskies will face top-ranked and defending national champion Michigan, No. 4 Texas and No. 18 Louisiana-Lafayette.
In all, Washington is scheduled to play against 12 teams ranked in the top-25 and five others that received votes.
The Huskies open their 2006 campaign on Feb. 10 vs. Kentucky and No. 12 Oklahoma at the Alexis Resort Classic in Las Vegas.