New College Softball Rankings Released
This No. 1 in the nation thing is looking good on the Florida State softball team.
After having never been ranked No. 1 before in NCAA college softball ranking program history, the Seminoles took the top perch for a third straight week, improving to 17–1–1 on the year during last week’s play.
Pitcher Jessica Burroughs continued to be an early candidate for Player of the Year honors after tossing two one-hit shutouts against Georgia Tech last week. The Seminoles won the middle game 13–8 to extend their win streak to 12 straight over the Yellow Jackets. Florida State is a scorching 86–10 (.896) in its last 96 games against ACC conference opponents. The Seminoles received 17 first-place votes and totaled 778 points.
The four teams immediately behind Florida State in the polls all flexed their muscles last week. No. Auburn improved to 19–2 by outscoring four opponents 52–2 and run-ruling all four of them.
№3 Florida might have had the most impressive week, going 3–0 at the Judi Garman Classic with wins over No. 23 California and No. 7 UCLA.
Gator pitcher Delanie Gourley needed only 62 pitches for a perfect game against Iowa, an easy 8–0 triumph. She struck out 12 batters in becoming the fourth Florida player, and the first since Stephanie Brombacher in 2011, to throw a perfect game.
Oregon, one of only two teams in the top 25 still undefeated, rolled their way through the Mizzou International, including defeating host Missouri, then ranked 24th, 10–3 and 7–2. The Ducks are 19–0.
Arizona moved up to No. 5 in the country by sweeping Texas 3–0, 2–1, and 4–2, while Texas A&M fell back a spot after suffering its first loss of the season, 1–0, to the University of Houston. The Aggies bounced back to sweep their own Texas A&M Invitational, and are now 19–1 on the year.
Minnesota showed that its gaudy record is no fluke by going 5–0 at the LSU Invitational and defeating №13 LSU 3–0.
The Golden Gophers are defending Big 10 champions and went 43–14 a year ago, but no one expected a start like this. Senior pitcher Sara Groenewegen is leading the charge. Already a two-time all-American, she leads the Big 10 in wins (90, ERA (0.50), and batting average against (.137). She’s second in the conference in strikeouts with 72.
It’s the younger players who are making the difference in this year’s opening charge. Freshman Makenna Partain from Banks, Oregon, is hitting .472 and has already won Big 10 Freshman of the Year honors twice this season. Teammate Sydney Dwyer is raking at a .434 clip with five doubles, two home runs, and 20 RBI. And as the Gophers’ win streak goes, so does third baseman Danielle Parlich’s hitting streak. She has at least one base knock in every game this year, has scored 17 runs, and is hitting .377.
This is the first time in school history that Minnesota has been ranked in the top 10 in NCAA college softball.
Washington, Oklahoma, and UCLA round out the top 10 this week.