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LOUISVILLE, Ky. — Virginia Wesleyan jumped two places this week to take over the No. 1 spot in the NFCA Top 25 softball rankings, returning to the position it held for two weeks last May.

The (29-1) Marlins, who went 4-0 over the last week, also jumped from third to first last season, when they ranked No. 1 in Division III for the first time in school history on May 4 and held that spot for two straight weeks. Like then, they received all eight possible first-place votes.

Berry (29-2), who had been No. 1 the past three weeks, dropped to third after a 4-1 week, which included an eight-inning loss to DePauw. Reigning national champion Texas-Tyler (28-2), meanwhile, remained the No. 2 team off a three-game sweep of Concordia.

Trine (21-1) stayed at No. 4 and Luther (20-2) moved up two places to No. 5 to complete an unanimous first five teams in the rankings.

Elsewhere, a second-straight 6-0 week surged Texas Lutheran (26-4) seven more places this week to 12th, while St. Thomas (17-3) gained eight spots to No. 17. Poll newcomer Stevens Institute of Technology (15-7) was joined by Illinois Wesleyan (14-6) and Wittenberg (14-4) — who both received votes previously — in the Top 25 for the first time this season at spots 22-24.

The NFCA Division III Top 25 Poll is selected by eight NCAA Division III head coaches representing the eight NCAA regions. Current 2017 records are listed, with first-place votes in parentheses.

NFCA Division III Top 25 Poll – April 5, 2017

Rank Team 2017 Record Points Previous
1 Virginia Wesleyan (8) 29-1 200 3
2 Texas-Tyler 28-2 192 2
3 Berry 29-2 184 1
4 Trine 21-1 176 4
5 Luther 20-2 168 7
6 Rowan 20-2 144 6
7 (tie) Coe 20-3 141 12
  St. John Fisher 17-3 141 5
9 Wisconsin-Eau Claire 15-3 131 10
10 Messiah 19-4 130 9
11 Moravian 18-2 119 T15
12 Texas Lutheran 26-4 110 19
13 East Texas Baptist 24-6 101 11
14 (tie) Central (Iowa) 20-4 98 17
  Kean 16-2 98 13
16 Randolph-Macon 20-4 70 T15
17 St. Thomas (Minn.) 17-3 62 25
18 Linfield 22-6 54 8
19 Massachusetts Institute of Technology 8-2 51 20
20 Springfield 16-2 45 24
21 Texas-Dallas 23-8 33 21
22 Stevens Institute of Technology 15-7 23 NR
23 Illinois Wesleyan 14-6 21 NR
24 Wittenberg 14-4 19 RV
25 Louisiana College 24-6 14 14

Others receiving votes: Whitworth 13, Lebanon Valley 12, Transylvania 11, Christopher Newport 10, Wisconsin-Whitewater 10, UMass-Boston 7, La Verne 5, Otterbein 4, Alma 2 and Cortland 1.

Dropped out: Hope, Oneonta, Washington (Mo.), Williams, Wisconsin-La Crosse and Wisconsin-Oshkosh.

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