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LOUISVILLE, Ky. — Virginia Wesleyan kept rolling to take over the top spot in the NFCA Division III Top 25 Coaches Poll for the first time since 2019.

The (23-3-1) Marlins scored a pair of one-run victories over Bridgewater (Va.) to reclaim the No. 1 ranking they last held on May 8, 2019. The current Virginia Wesleyan squad is riding a four-game win streak and has won eight of its last nine contests. All three of Marlins’ losses — and their tie — have come against ranked teams.

Meanwhile, defending national champion Texas Lutheran (23-4) has won 15 straight, and 19 of its last 20, to move up to the second spot. Three of the Bulldogs’ four losses this season were to schools that can offer athletic scholarships (two Division II and one NAIA).

Linfield (25-3), which had held the top spot in the poll for the past three weeks, dropped to third after being shut out by Lewis & Clark in the first game of a four-game series over the weekend. The Wildcats did rebound to win the final three games of the matchup.

Elsewhere, Eastern Connecticut (18-0) continued its climb up the rankings, gaining two more places this week, going from seventh to fifth. The Warriors have now won 31 of their last 33 games, and haven’t lost since May 26, 2019, when they fell 3-2 in an eight-inning heartbreaker to eventual national runner-up Emory at the NCAA Championship finals in Tyler, Texas.

Four teams —The College of New Jersey (8-2), Hope (15-5), Framingham State (17-1) and Stevenson (16-6) — moved into the Top 25 this week.

The NFCA Division III Top 25 Poll is selected by eight NCAA Division III head coaches representing the eight NCAA regions. Current records are listed, with first-place votes in parentheses. In 2021, schools that are not competing will not be eligible for the poll.  

NFCA Division III Top 25 Poll – April 14, 2021

Rank

Team

2021 Record

Points

Previous

1

Virginia Wesleyan (8)

23-3-1

200

2

2

Texas Lutheran

23-4

192

3

3

Linfield

25-3

184

1

4

East Texas Baptist

19-3

176

4

5

Eastern Connecticut State

18-0

168

7

6

Birmingham-Southern

23-3

160

9

7

Belhaven

23-6

152

T10

8

Salisbury

17-5

144

5

9

DePauw

17-2

136

T10

10

Moravian

10-0

128

15

11

Christopher Newport

20-8

120

6

12

St. John Fisher

11-1

110

12

13

Milwaukee School of Engineering

19-2

98

16

14

Wartburg

19-5

88

14

15

Berry

19-6

87

13

16

Saint Benedict

14-2

78

19

17

Emory & Henry

17-3

72

17

18

The College of New Jersey

8-2

68

NR

19

Randolph-Macon

10-5-1

64

20

20

Kean

14-2

48

8

21

Cortland

9-3

37

T21

22

Mount Union

19-5

25

T21

23

Hope

15-5

22

NR

24

Framingham State

17-1

18

NR

25

Stevenson

16-6

17

NR

Others receiving votes:  St. Scholastica 4, Transylvania 2, Millikin 1, Misericordia 1.

Dropped out: Alvernia, Dubuque, McMurry, Trine and Westminster (Pa.).

Programs that do not participate during the 2021 season will not be eligible for the poll.

2021 NFCA Division III Top 25 Committee

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