BAY CITY, Mich.—The Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (GLIAC) released its annual Preseason Softball Coaches' Poll Tuesday (Feb. 10) to launch their 2015 media day.
The Lake Erie College softball team was selected to finish 13th in the conference, receiving 24 points.
Wayne State University was selected to finish first in the conference, receiving 168 points and 12 first-place votes. Ohio Dominican University finished the poll in second, receiving 149 points and one first-place vote. Grand Valley State University received 138 points to finish in third. Saginaw Valley State University finished in fourth with 128 points and the remaining first-place vote. Ashland University was just behind Saginaw Valley with 127 points.
Spots five through nine are occupied by Northwood University, Walsh University, Tiffin University and the University of Findlay respectively. Hillsdale College came in at number ten followed by Ferris State University at 11. Lake Superior State University finished just ahead of the Storm in 12th. Malone University rounded out the poll in 14th.
The complete poll and previews for each team can be found here.
The Storm softball team returns several players from last season for their second year under Head Coach Stephanie Smith. Lindsey Valvoda returns for her sophomore season after leading the Storm in batting average last season (.325). Classmate Elizabeth Karako also returns after finishing second on the team in average last season (.320). Darrien Yanek led the Storm with five homeruns and 10 doubles last season. Nine new players join the Storm this year.
The Storm opens the season in Clearwater, Fla. on March 1 against Assumption College.