The 2013 SXU Softball squad proved to be one of the program's best ever
The 2013 SXU Softball squad proved to be one of the program's best ever
Softball - Tue, Jan. 21, 2014

Kansas City, Mo. – Following the incredible success of the Saint Xavier University softball team's 2013 campaign, the program was thrilled to learn it had received the No. 5 national ranking when the NAIA released its 2014 NAIA Softball Coaches' Preseason Top 25 Poll Tuesday afternoon.  The squad ended last season ranked No. 7 in the 2013 NAIA Softball Coaches' Postseason Top 25 Poll last June, the best postseason finish in school history.  SXU finished 50-9 overall and won the CCAC regular season (19-1) and tournament titles en route to winning the Portland (Ore.) bracket of the NAIA Softball National Championship Opening Round.    

"It's a great honor and incredibly exciting for Saint Xavier University," said SXU softball coach Myra Minuskin.  "Our 2013 team opened a lot of eyes across the country and gained the respect of the national raters.  The 2014 squad is on a mission to accomplish even more."

Claiming a spot in the 10-team 2013 NAIA Softball National Championship in Columbus, Ga., the Cougars won one of their three games to claim their No. 7 national finish.  The Cougar defense was extremely tough throughout the 2013 campaign to the tune of a NAIA-leading .981 fielding percentage.  Fellow Chicagoland Collegiate Athletic Conference (CCAC) foe Olivet Nazarene University (Ill.) earned the No. 10 spot in this year's preseason poll.

Saint Xavier begins its 2014 season in mid-March heading to Florida over "Spring Break" with nine days of softball action on tap.  The Cougars open at home on Tuesday, March 18, with a 3 p.m. doubleheader against conference rival University of St. Francis (Ill.).
  

2014 NAIA Softball Coaches' Preseason Top 25 Poll (Jan. 21)
RANK
LAST WEEK^
SCHOOL (1ST PLACE VOTES)
2013 RECORD
TOTAL POINTS
1
1
Concordia (Calif.) (20)
52-3
591
2
2
Spring Hill (Ala.) (1)
49-17
572
3
5
Oklahoma City
51-14
543
4
4
Williams Baptist (Ark.)
46-9
535
T5
6
Reinhardt (Ga.)
45-9
499
T5
7
Saint Xavier (Ill.)
50-9
499
7
8
Auburn Montgomery (Ala.)
45-12
480
8
9
Cal State San Marcos
43-12
468
9
13
Belhaven (Miss.)
38-14
423
10
15
Olivet Nazarene (Ill.)
48-9
390
11
14
Lindsey Wilson (Ky.)
50-10
384
12
11
USC Beaufort (S.C.)
43-6
369
13
19
College of Idaho
36-23
354
14
17
Freed-Hardeman (Tenn.)
32-9
306
T15
NR
Oklahoma Baptist
33-23
298
T15
18
Houston-Victoria (Texas)
32-22
298
17
20
Brenau (Ga.)
34-16
279
18
RV
Concordia (Ore.)
35-23
221
19
16
St. Gregory's (Okla.)
35-17
215
20
22
Bellevue (Neb.)
43-11
209
21
25
William Carey (Miss.)
34-18
189
22
20
Park (Mo.)
31-11
184
23
RV
Central Methodist (Mo.)
35-12
172
24
21
Friends (Kan.)
43-8
167
25
RV
Oregon Tech
37-16
131

Others receiving votes: Indiana Southeast 123; Corban (Ore.) 60; Campbellsville (Ky.) 56; Davenport (Mich.) 55; Vanguard (Calif.) 54; Marian (Ind.) 53; Mobile (Ala.) 51; Central Baptist (Ark.) 32; William Woods (Mo.) 20; Virginia Intermont 15; Simpson (Calif.) 12; Columbia (Mo.) 7; Bethel (Ind.) 7; Grand View (Iowa) 5; LSU Alexandria 3.
^ Ranking from June 5, 2013 (2013 Postseason Top 25)