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Crusaders Picked Fifth in Horizon League Preseason Poll
Andrea Zappia enters the 2008 season tied for 14th in NCAA history in career saves.
Andrea Zappia enters the 2008 season tied for 14th in NCAA history in career saves.

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

The Valparaiso University softball team has been tabbed to finish in fifth place in the Horizon League in preseason polling of the league’s head coaches.

Head coach Randy Schneider returns six starting position players and all four pitchers from the 2007 squad that won a school record-tying 27 games.  The Crusaders garnered 35 points in the polling, which awarded nine points for a first-place vote.

Loyola has been projected to win the league, receiving five first-place votes and 60 points.  UIC and Wright State each earned two first-place votes and checked in with 53 and 50 points, respectively, while Cleveland State was picked fourth with 41 points.  Following the Crusaders were Butler (34), Youngstown State (22) and Green Bay (18), while Detroit rounded out the polling with 11 points.

Valparaiso opens the 2008 campaign on February 21 at the Tulsa Invitational, taking on the host Golden Hurricane at 6 p.m.

Team

Points (1st place votes)

1.

Loyola

60 (5)

2.

UIC

53 (2)

3.

Wright State

50 (2)

4.

Cleveland State

41

5.

Valparaiso

35

6.

Butler

34

7.

Youngstown State

22

8.

Green Bay

18

9.

Detroit

11