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UMHB Softball picked second in ASC Preseason Poll

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Posted at 3:53 PM, Jan 29, 2019
and last updated 2019-01-29 16:53:16-05

BELTON, Texas – The University of Mary Hardin-Baylor softball team was picked to finish second in the American Southwest Conference in the league’s annual Preseason Coaches and Media Poll. The Cru totaled 285 points and nine first-place votes in balloting of ASC coaches, sports information directors and selected media representatives.

East Texas Baptist was picked to win the conference with 291 points and 15 first-place votes. The Tigers were the runners-up in the 2018 ASC Championship and advanced to the regional round of the NCAA Tournament. Concordia University Texas followed the Cru in third with 249 points. The Tornados finished 25-18 last season, going 19-11 in ASC action.

UT Dallas was ranked fourth with 229 points followed by Louisiana College in fifth with 182 points and Belhaven in sixth with 177 points. Sul Ross State was chosen seventh with 151 points, LeTourneau was predicted eighth with 130 points and McMurry was selected ninth with 110 points. Ozarks (93 points), Howard Payne (65 points) and Hardin-Simmons (55 points) rounded out the 12 league teams. Louisiana College and LeTourneau also earned one first-place vote each. Reigning ASC Champion UT Tyler will also compete in the ASC but is ineligible for the regular season title, conference championship or NCAA championship as they reclassify to Division II.

Senior Emily Bounds and juniors Hannah Wolfe and CeCe Darilek were named to the Preseason Watch List. Bounds, a catcher from Moody, Texas (Moody H.S.), earned Third Team All-ASC honors last season and started in all 43 games for the Cru. Darilek, a pitcher from Shiner, Texas (Shiner H.S.), and Wolfe, a pitcher/infielder from Robinson, Texas (Robinson H.S.) were also Third Team All-ASC selections. Darilek threw 71 innings with a 5-4 record in the circle last season. Wolfe, who missed part of the season due to injury, led the Cru with a .373 batting average, totaling 38 hits with 17 RBI and nine runs scored.

UMHB finished the 2018 season with a 29-14 record. The Cru went 22-8 in conference play and advanced to the postseason for the 17th time. UMHB is expected to return 10 letter winners from last season and will open the 2019 season with a doubleheader at East Texas Baptist University on Thursday, February 7th in Marshall.