Softball ranks seventh in ASUN preseason

UNA Softball ranked seventh in ASUN preseason rankings.

ASUN coaches voted the Lion’s softball team to finish seventh in the rankings among teams such as Liberty, Florida Gulf Coast, Kennesaw State and several more.

The Lions finished the 2018 season with an overall (46-7) record and a (29-3) Gulf South Conference record. They started and ended the 2018 season with a loss, both by only one run.

The preseason standing for the ASUN conference is as follows: Liberty (61 votes), FGCU (56), Kennesaw State (47), Lipscomb (44), North Florida (24), Jacksonville (22), UNA (20) and Stetson (14).

The Lions has only six more votes than eighth place Stetson and received zero first place votes from ASUN coaches.

ASUN newcomer, Liberty, garners the attention from the coaches as they receive five first place votes. FGCU has two votes for first place and defending ASUN tournament and regular season champion Kennesaw State has only one.

Even in the Lion’s first Division-I year for softball, they still tally in the fan-votes for ASUN preseason player of the year and defensive player of the year.

Junior third-baseman Hannah Shollenberger has 368 votes for preseason player of the year. Sophomore second-baseman Alex Brown tallies an ASUN-leading 595 votes for preseason defensive player of the year.

Brown and Shollenberger are the seventh and eighth Lion athletes to win an ASUN preseason favorite vote this year.

North Alabama softball retains eight starters including two pitchers. The team held onto three all-conference, three all-region and one all-America selection from last year.

UNA will play in four different tournaments this season. They play their first in Montgomery, then travel to Conway, Ark. North Alabama plays their final two in Tennessee. The first in Nashville and the second in Memphis.

The Lions softball team faces off against the UAB Blazers Feb. 7 in Birmingham. Throughout the season, they will play teams like Memphis, Texas Tech, Troy and more in their first Division I year.

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