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January 19, 2009

Eagles picked to finish fourth in GLVC

Official GLVC Poll Release
2009 Season Outlook

EVANSVILLE, Ind.The University of Southern Indiana softball team has been picked to finish fourth in the GLVC in a vote by the league's coaches.

USI, which finished fifth in the GLVC in 2008, received 108 points in the preseason poll. The Screaming Eagles went 31-23 last season, posting a 14-10 mark in conference play.

Led by eighth-year Head Coach Sue Kunkle, the program's all-time winningest skipper with 215 career victories, USI is looking to build around a powerful offense in 2009 that features three players with at least 10 career home runs.

Junior designated player Sara Loete (Pekin, Illinois) headlines the Eagles' group of returning players after earning All-America honors by both the NFCA and Daktronics last season. Loete hit 10 home runs and racked up a school-record 54 RBIs in 2008, the most by any player in the GLVC.

Lewis University, last year's GLVC regular-season champion, was the coaches' pick to win the GLVC in 2009. The Flyers received 142 points and 10 first-place votes to edge the University of Indianapolis, which was picked second with 133 points and three first-place votes.

Missouri University of Science and Technology had 113 points to edge the Eagles for third in the poll, while the University of Missouri-St. Louis rounded out the top five choices with 86 points.

Quincy University and Rockhurst University each received 82 points and were tied for sixth, while the University of Wisconsin-Parkside (80 points), Northern Kentucky University (52 points), and Saint Joseph's College (49 points) rounded out the top 10. Drury University (46 points), Kentucky Wesleyan College (25 points), and Bellarmine University (16 points) rounded out the poll.

The Eagles open the season February 13-15 at the University of Arkansas-Monticello Classic. They open GLVC play March 21 when they visit Missouri-St. Louis.

Team-Total Points (First-place votes)
1. Lewis-142 (10)
2. Indianapolis-133 (3)
3. Missouri S&T-113
4. Southern Indiana-108
5. Missouri-St. Louis-86
6. Quincy-82
8. UW-Parkside-80
9. Northern Kentucky-52
10. Saint Joseph's-49
11. Drury-46
12. Kentucky Wesleyan-25
13. Bellarmine-16

Dan McDonnell,
USI Sports Information

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