SEATTLE – After finishing 3rd at the 2013 Women’s College World Series, the Huskies earned a No. 3 ranking in the National Fastpitch Coaches Association preseason poll on Tuesday. This is the highest preseason ranking for the Huskies since 2010 when they were ranked No. 1 following their 2009 national championship.
“It means people respect our program, and that’s the biggest compliment you could ever have as a program is the respect you gain prior to a season beginning,” head coach Heather Tarr said. “But more importantly for us, we’re focused on improving as a group regardless of the rankings. We’re on a mission to be a great team and to be successful this season, so no matter what the polls say, we are just trying to consume ourselves with how good this team can be this year.”
The Huskies debut at No. 3 in the NFCA preseason poll marks the 20th consecutive season that Washington has appeared in the preseason top 25.
The Huskies return 14 letterwinners, including 8 seniors led by 2013 1st team All-American pitcher Kaitlin Inglesby, from last season’s team, which compiled an overall record of 45-17 and 16-8 in Pac-12 play.
The Huskies are the highest-ranked team of six Pac-12 teams in the top 25. They are joined by Arizona State at No. 7, Oregon at No. 8, UCLA at No 16, Stanford at No. 22, and Cal at No. 24.
In their non-conference schedule, the Huskies will face six teams currently ranked in the top-25, opening the season with No. 18 Baylor on Friday, Feb. 7 at 9:00 a.m. in Las Vegas at the UNLV/SportCo Kick-Off Classic. The Huskies will also face No. 2 Oklahoma, No. 5 Michigan, No. 9 Nebraska, No. 10 Texas, and No. 17 LSU. The Huskies complete 2014 schedule can be viewed here.
“We have always tried to play the best teams in our pre-conference tournaments,” Tarr said. “We’re excited to have the opportunity to improve and to be able to play against some of the best teams in the country.”
The complete NFCA preseason poll can be viewed here.
Washington in the Preseason NFCA Poll All-Time
1995: No. 23
1996: No. 4
1997: No. 4
1998: No. 3
1999: No. 4
2000: No. 2
2001: No. 4
2002: No. 9
2003: No. 6
2004: No. 5
2005: No. 11
2006: No. 13
2007: No. 12
2008: No. 11
2009: No. 21
2010: No. 1
2011: No. 10
2012: No. 12
2013: No. 16
2014: No. 3
- The Huskies open the season Friday, February 7 vs. Baylor in Las Vegas. The Huskies complete 2014 schedule is available here.
- Reserve season tickets for the 2014 season today. Single-game tickets for the Huskies 12-game home schedule go on sale Wednesday, February 26. More information is available here.
- The Huskies open their home schedule Friday, March 14 against Pac-12 foe Utah at 5:00 p.m. at Husky Softball Stadium. Promotions include "Softball Friday Night Under the Lights" and Professor Appreciation night, where professors with an invite gain free admission, and faculty and staff tickets are just $3.
- All season long, take advantage of the Huskies new ticket redemption promotion. Exchange a used ticket from a previous 2014 Husky softball home game for a $3 general admission ticket to a future 2014 regular season Husky softball home game.