Red Raiders Picked to Finish Fourth in Big 12 Preseason Poll|
The Red Raiders were picked to finish fourth in the Big 12 Preseason Poll Thursday.
Jan. 17, 2013
LUBBOCK, Texas - After its second-consecutive 40-win season and its highest Big 12 Conference finish in over a decade a year ago, Texas Tech was picked to finish fourth Thursday in the Preseason Big 12 Softball Poll.
The fourth-place nod marked the Red Raiders' highest preseason selection since the poll was created prior to the 2000 season, breaking the previous mark from 2001 when Tech was slotted to finish tied for sixth.
The Red Raiders are coming off a 41-17 season in 2012 where Tech finished fifth in the Big 12 standings after posting a 13-10 league record. It marked the program's highest regular-season finish since 2001 as the Red Raiders topped four ranked conference opponents during the season.
Tech returns 10 letterwinners off that squad, including leading hitters Adriana Perez, Sandy James and Mikey Kenney along with its two staples in the circle in Cara Custer and Brittany Talley. The group will join with a talented group of 12 newcomers that will add to Tech's depth around the diamond.
Oklahoma was picked as the preseason favorite for the fourth time in the last five years as the Sooners, who finished as the national runner-up a year ago, notched 36 points in the poll followed by Texas with 29 and third-place Baylor with 28.
Tech earned 20 points to finish ahead of Oklahoma State (20), Kansas (12) and Iowa State (6) in the poll.
The Red Raiders open the 2013 season on Feb. 8 with a doubleheader against Central Florida and DePaul at the Sportco Kick-Off Classic in Las Vegas, Nev.