FAYETTEVILLE, N.C. – The Huntingdon softball team is ranked fifth in the USA South Athletic Conference West Division poll. The preseason poll was released on Wednesday.
This is the first season the USA South has split the softball poll into divisions. The addition of new conference members Agnes Scott, Salem and Wesleyan pushed the total number of conference softball teams to 16, leading to the divisional polls.
Huntingdon earned 31 points in the West Division poll. Piedmont, the 2016 regular-season conference champions, picked up six first-place votes and a total of 47 points.
Maryville is second with one first-place vote and 42 points, LaGrange is third with one first-place vote and 33 points and Salem is fourth with 32 points.
Behind Huntingdon, Covenant is sixth with 17 points, Agnes Scott is seventh with 14 points and Wesleyan is eighth with eight points.
North Carolina Wesleyan in the preseason favorite in the East Division. The Battling Bishops received five first-place votes and 47 total points.
The Lady Hawks open their season on Feb. 11 at home with a doubleheader against Berry. Game 1 is set for noon.
The complete East and West Division polls are listed below.
USA South Softball Preseason Poll
1. Piedmont (6 first-place votes), 47 points
2. Maryville (1), 42 points
3. LaGrange (1), 33 points
4. Salem, 32 points
5. Huntingdon, 31 points
6. Covenant, 17 points
7. Agnes Scott, 14 points
8. Wesleyan, 8 points
1. N.C. Wesleyan (5 first-place votes), 47 points
2. Ferrum (1), 41 points
3. Meredith (1), 33 points
4. William Peace (1), 32 points
5. Averett, 27 points
6. Greensboro, 24 points
7. Methodist, 13 points
8. Mary Baldwin, 7 points