KANSAS CITY, Mo. — After a season when coach Shannon Wathen led her team to the NAIA Softball World Series for the first time, the Campbellsville University Lady Tigers are starting the 2016 season with their second-best ranking in history.
Campbellsville starts 2016 ranked No. 8 in the NAIA Softball Coaches’ Preseason Poll, officials announced on Tuesday evening. The highest ranking in program history came last season when the Lady Tigers were No. 7 for three polls (April 11, April 28 and May 7)
The Lady Tigers, who finished 2015 with a 38-11 record and won their sixth Mid-South Conference regular season title, gained 377 voting points from the national raters.
Campbellsville is one of only two Mid-South Conference teams mentioned in the poll. Lindsey Wilson College, which finished NAIA runner-up last season, comes in at No. 2 with 482 voting points.
The Blue Raiders sit right behind defending NAIA national champion Auburn Montgomery. The Warhawks were the unanimous decision for the top spot with 498 voting points after winning their second NAIA World Series last season in the “if-necessary” championship game over LWC.
Oregon Tech (No. 3) and LSU Alexandria (No. 4) swapped spots, as LSU Alexandria is the only team in the preseason Top 25 that moved down from last years postseason poll.
Central Methodist University, which ended last season with a 45-10 record, rounds out the Top 5 with 434 voting points.