Coming off a school record setting season in 2013, the Cowley College softball team enters the 2014 season ranked No. 2 in the NJCAA Division II preseason poll.
The Lady Tigers won a school record 55 games and placed third at last year's national tournament. Cowley would finish the 2013 season with a record of 55-8 overall and 24-2 in the Jayhawk Conference Eastern Division.
Cowley College head coach Ed Hargrove, who is in his 30th season in charge of the Lady Tiger softball team, returns nine players and two All-Americans from last year's squad.
"With the way we finished last season and the number of people we have returning I thought we would be ranked pretty high," Hargrove said. "This is a nice sign of respect for the program."
Cowley will open its season Feb. 7-8 at the Cowtown Classic in Fort Worth, Texas. The team will play its first home doubleheader at 2 p.m. Feb. 18 when they take on Northern Oklahoma College-Tonkawa.
"It's nice to be recognized, but now we need to go live up to the ranking," Hargrove said.
(1) LSU-Eunice; (2) Cowley College; (3) Phoenix (AZ); (4) Highland; (5) Kirkwood (IA); (6) Kalamazoo Valley (MI); (7) Heartland (IL); (8) Mississippi Gulf Coast; (9) Scottsdale (AZ); (10) Sauk Valley (IL); (11) Mercyhurst North East (PA); (12) Kankakee (IL); (13) Des Moines Area (IA); (14) Mott (MI); (15) Jones County (MS); (16) Illinois Central; (17) Murray State (OK); (18) CCBC-Catonsville (MD); (19) Florence-Darlington Tech; (20) Delaware Tech-Owens.