Oklahoma City, Okla. – Despite a 4-0 loss last week to then No. 24 Florida that ended their perfect record, the University of Tennessee (24-1) remains as the No. 1 team in the nation according to this week’s ESPN.com/USA Softball Collegiate Poll. Alabama, which is the only undefeated team remaining in the top 25, moved up to No. 2 this week marking the first-time that teams from the Southeastern Conference hold to top two spots in the ESPN.com/USA Softball Top 25 poll.
The Lady Volunteers, who had been a unanimous No. 1 in the last two polls, received only 12 first-place votes after finishing this week with a 4-1 record. Tennessee entered the week as one of three teams undefeated in the poll but their 23-game win streak came to an end with a 4-0 loss to Florida in the second game of a double-header. They were able to take game one against Florida 1-0 in 10 innings before being shutout in the second game of the double header. The Lady Vols clinched the three-game series with a 3-1 win on Sunday.
The Crimson Tide began their conference season with a three game sweep over Mississippi State. With a perfect 24-0 record, Alabama earns their highest ranking ever after earning eight of the 20 first place votes in this week’s poll.
The Arizona Wildcats (17-5) fell three spots to No. 5 after suffering two losses to Baylor (24-5) in Waco, Texas. The Wildcats opened a three-game series against the Lady Bears with a 3-0 victory but dropped the last two games in the final inning by an identical score of 3-2. With the series win over Arizona, Baylor moved up four spots to No. 10 this week.
No. 6 Oklahoma (28-1) dropped out of the top five after falling 2-0 to in-state rival Tulsa on Friday. The loss ended the Sooner’s perfect start this year and a 23-game winning streak. No. 19 Georgia (22-8) moved up four spots after a perfect 7-0 record with big wins over No. 20 Southern Illinois and Florida State.
No. 24 South Carolina (23-3) and No. 25 Hawaii (22-5) made their way into the top 25 while NC State (18-8) and Cal (18-9) dropped out of the top 25 but are still receiving votes. This is the first-time in the history of the ESPN.com/USA Softball Top 25 poll that Cal is not among the teams in the top 25 rankings.
This marks the first time in the history of the ESPN.com/USA Softball Top 25 Poll that four teams from the Big 12 Conference are ranked in the top 10. The Southeastern Conference, Pac 10 and Big Ten have two teams each in the top 10.
The Amateur Softball Association, founded in 1933, is the National Governing Body of softball in the United States and a member of the United States Olympic Committee. The ASA has become one of the nation’s largest sports organizations and now sanctions competition in every state through a network of 84 local associations. The ASA has grown from a few hundred teams in the early days to over 240,000 teams today, representing a membership of more than three million. For more information on the ASA, visit www.asasoftball.com.
About USA Softball
USA Softball is the brand created, operated and owned by the ASA that links the USA Men’s, Women’s, Junior Boys’ and Junior Girls’ National Team programs together. USA Softball is responsible for training, equipping and promoting these four National Teams to compete in international and domestic competitions. The USA Softball Women’s National Team is one of the only two women’s sports involved in the Olympic movement to capture three consecutive gold medals at the Olympic Games since 1996. The U.S. women have also won eight World Championship titles including the last six consecutive. For more information about USA Softball, please visit www.usasoftball.com.
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