LOUISVILLE, Ky. – In a week that saw a lot of movement, West Texas A&M and Indianapolis remained constant as the top two teams in the NFCA Division II Top 25 Coaches Poll, announced by the Association on Wednesday morning.
The Lady Buffs (31-1) had their 30-game unbeaten start to the season ended in game one of their Lone Star series at Texas A&M University-Commerce (4-6), but rebounded to defeat the Lions (5-2, 8-6, 11-4) in the next three contests. With its 5-1 on week, which included a pair of non-conference wins at St. Edwards (1-0, 5-2), WT received 12 first-place votes and 396 points.
The Greyhounds (23-0) improved on their undefeated start with six road victories last week, sweeping a midweek twinbill at Walsh (2-0, 9-4) and both their Great Lakes Valley Conference (GLVC) doubleheaders against Missouri S&T (10-0, 11-1) and Drury (13-0, 21 in 11 inn.). Indianapolis picked up four first-place votes (388 points) and is the only undefeated team remaining across the NFCA’s three Top-25 polls.
No. 3 Humboldt State moved up a spot after it enjoyed a 7-1 week in CCAA play after two idle weeks due to weather. After the Jacks (20-2-1) dropped their first game of the week at Chico State (3-11), they reeled off seven victories, three against the Wildcats (3-2, 4-2 in 8 inn., 3-2 in 8 inn.) and a four-game sweep at Cal State San Bernardino (2-1, 3-0, 4-3, 7-5).
Arkansas State slid up a spot and North Alabama moved up two as the programs tied for fourth. The Golden Suns (25-2) put forth a 5-1 week in GAC play, including a four-game road sweep at East Central (9-0, 4-1, 4-1, 6-1). The Lions (32-4) extended their winning streak to 15 games after sweeping West Alabama (20-4, 13-2, 17-5) in a Gulf South road series.
University of Missouri-St. Louis also shifted up a spot following a 5-1 week, while Saint Leo grabbed the No. 7 position as it won five more games to improve to 26-1.
North Georgia returned to the top 10 for the first time since the preseason poll. The Nighthawks (30-5) pushed their winning streak to 13 games with six victories, four via the shutout.
St. Mary’s stayed put at No. 9 as it extended its winning streak to 18- the longest active streak in Division II. The Rattlers (26-5) swept a home twinbill from Texas A&M Kingsville and a Heartland Conference series from Oklahoma Christian.
University of Alabama in Huntsville dropped to No. 10 from No. 3 after being defeated twice in a three-game Gulf South series at then RV-Delta State (1-5, 0-8, 7-0).
The movement continued over the final 15 spots as No. 20 Southern New Hampshire, t-23 Chico State and No. 25 UC San Diego were the only three teams to remain in their previous rankings. Joining the top-25 this week is No. 19 Young Harris, No. 21 Delta State, No. 22 Armstrong State and t-23 Texas Woman’s. Georgia College, Caldwell, Angelo State and Florida Tech fell out of the rankings.
The NFCA Division II Top 25 Coaches Poll is voted on by 16 NCAA Division II head coaches, two representing each of the eight NCAA regions. Records reflect games played through March 20.
2016 NFCA Division II Softball Coaches Poll
Regular Season (Week 5) | March 23, 2016
West Texas A&M (12)
|12||West Virginia Wesleyan||217||21-3||13|
|18||Wayne State (Mich.)||102||21-4||22|
|20||Southern New Hampshire||75||7-5||20|
|25||UC San Diego||29||17-7||25|
Dropped Out: No. 8 Georgia College, No. 17 Caldwell, No. 21 Angelo State, No. 24 Florida Tech
New To Poll: No. 19 Young Harris, No. 21 Delta State, No. 22 Armstrong State, No. t-23 Texas Woman’s
Receiving Votes: Georgia College (26), Florida Tech (24), Missouri Western (22), LIU Post (16), New Haven (14), Angelo State 14, Southern Indiana 12, Grand Valley State 10, Southern Arkansas (6), Rollins (4), Valdosta State (4), Pittsburg State (3), Lenoir-Rhyne (1).