Softball picked fourth in MVC Preseason Poll

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    Jan. 22, 2014

    SIUSalukis.com

    MVC Release

    CARBONDALE, Ill.—The Southern Illinois softball team has been picked fourth in the 2014 Missouri Valley Conference Preseason Coaches Poll.

    The Salukis received the coaches’ fourth-place pick with 63 votes.

    “I am excited that people think enough of us to put us in that top tier where we could be fighting for a conference crown because we believe we are going to be able to do that,” said SIU head coach Kerri Blaylock.

    UNI has been picked as this year’s preseason favorite in Missouri Valley Conference soft¬ball as voted unanimously by the league’s coaches, earning 100 points. Illinois State took second-place and 83 points with Drake an extremely close third (82 points).

    “Northern Iowa is returning their Pitcher of the Year and they are a veteran ball club so I don’t think that is a surprise,” Blaylock said. “I really don’t think there are any surprises up and down but my thoughts on polls have always been that it is just a poll and what happens during the season is way more important.”

    Southern is represented on the MVC Preseason All-Conference Team by senior Jayna Spivey and junior Meredith Wilson. Spivey brings an offensive spark to the Salukis as she finished tied for first in RBIs, second in home runs and fourth in two-out RBIs in the Conference. Wilson is a two-time All-MVC Sec¬ond Team member.

    “I am happy for Jayna Spivey and Meredith Wilson,” said Blaylock. “I always feel like I have more players that are deserving but again, it is what we do during the season.”


     

     

    SIU returns 14 letterwinners, including seven position starters and two pitchers to the 2014 squad.

    The 2014 season will begin on Feb. 7 when the Salukis travel to San Marcos, Texas for the Century Link Classic hosted by Texas State University.

    2014 Preseason Poll

    Rank Team (1st-place votes) Points
    1. UNI (10)...................................................... 100
    2. Illinois State.................................................. 83
    3. Drake............................................................ 82
    4. Southern Illinois............................................ 63
    5. Missouri State............................................... 51
    6. Loyola........................................................... 44
    7. Bradley.......................................................... 43
    9. Evansville...................................................... 30
    10. Indiana State................................................. 21

    2014 Preseason All-Conference Team

    Player, Team (Pos./ Yr.)
    Laura Canopy, Illinois State (1B/ Sr.)
    Jayna Spivey, Southern Illinois (2B/ Sr.)
    Shelby Wilson, Indiana State (3B/ Sr.)
    Morgan Allee, Indiana State (SS/ Sr.)
    Bailiegh Basham, Bradley (C/Sr. )
    Madeline Lynch-Crumrine, Bradley (DP-P/Sr.)
    Mary Stephens, Missouri State (DP-U/So.)
    Meredith Wilson, Southern Illinois (DP-U/ Jr.)
    Nichelle Harrison, Illinois State (OF /RS Sr.)
    Kayla Fortner, Evansville (OF/ Jr.)
    Bri Joseph, Bradley (OF/ Sr.)
    Jamie Fisher, UNI (P/ Sr.)
    Taylor Baxter, Illinois State (P/ Sr.)

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