Photo Courtesy: ragincajuns.com

 

Louisiana Ragin' Cajuns softball team, who finished 47-15 a season ago, was selected to finish first in the Sun Belt Conference Softball Preseason Poll that was released on Monday evening, as selected by the league's coaches.

The Cajuns, who have qualified for an NCAA Super Regional in two-consecutive years, including three of the last four, finished in third place last year, and return starters Natalie Fernandez, Samantha Walsh, Shellie, Landry, and Leandra Maly, along with ace pitcher Jordan Wallace.

Louisiana received six of a possible eight first place votes, and six  total points in the poll.

South Alabama, the defending league champs, received the other two first-place votes, and are picked second in the poll, with 57 overall points.

WKU, Texas St., Georgia St., Troy, UT-Arlington, ULM are picked 3-8, respectively.

Meanwhile, Wallace was selected as the Preseason Pitcher of the Year, while outfielder Shellie Landry and designated hitter Sara Corbello, along with Wallace, were voted to the Sun Belt Conference Preseason team.

Wallace, a junior, compiled a 32-9 record last year, along with 382 strikeouts, and a 1.70 ERA.

Landry, a sophomore, was named All-Sun Belt second-team last season, after hitting a .284, with 16 home runs and 61 RBI's.

Corbello, a sophomore hit a .291 a season ago, along with 8 homers and 35 RBI's.

WKU second baseman Olivia Watkins, who led the league with 38 stolen bases last year, was named the Preseason Player of the Year.

2014 Sun Belt Conference Softballl Preseason Poll (First Place Votes)

  1. Louisiana (6)-62 pts
  2. South Alabama (2) -57 pts
  3. WKU (0) -47 pts
  4. Texas St. (0) -33 pts
  5. Georgia St. (0) -30 pts
  6. Troy (0) -27 pts
  7. UT Arlington (0) -21 pts
  8. ULM (0) -11 pts

2014 Sun Belt Conference Preseason All-Conference Team

P: Hannah Campbell (South Alabama, Senior, Pitcher); Jordan Wallace (Louisiana, Junior, Pitcher)

C: Callie Alford (Georgia St., Junior, C/3B)

1B: Kacie McAllister (Troy, Senior, 1B)

2B: Olivia Watkins (WKU, Senior, 2B)

SS: Kaitlyn Griffin (South Alabama, Junior, SS)

3B: Preslie Cruce (WKU, Junior, 3B)

OF: Shellie Landry (Louisiana, Sophomore, OF); Blair Johnson (South Alabama, Junior, OF); Jessica Clifton (Georgia State, Senior, OF)

DP: Sara Corbello (Louisiana, Sophomore, DP)

At-Large: Emily Rousseau (WKU, Senior, Pitcher); Nina Villanueva (UT Arlington, Junior, SS); Callie Alford (Georgia State, Junior, 3B); Britnea Barilli (UT Arlington, Sophomore, OF)

2014 Sun Belt Conference Preseason Player of the Year Olivia Watkins (WKU, Senior, 2B)

2014 Sun Belt Conference Preseason Pitcher Player of the Year Jordan Wallace (Louisiana, Junior, Pitcher)