KANSAS CITY, Mo. – The Oregon Tech softball team will start the season at No. 8 in the 2020 NAIA Postseason Coaches’ Top 25 Poll announced by the national office. The first regular-season Top 25 edition will be announced Wednesday, March 4.

After an eighth place NAIA world series finish last year that ranks in the top three finishes in program history, Oregon Tech softball returns eight players for the 2020 season, which opens with a doubleheader against Pacific University in Medford at U.S. Cellular Field at 12:00 pm on February 1st.

The Owls finished the 2019 season with a 44-17 record that included head coach Greg Stewart‘s 500th career win on February 24. The Lady Owls had a 23-4 conference record that gave them a second-place seed in the Cascade Conference tournament, also earning them a berth to the NAIA Opening Round Championship. It marked their eleventh appearance in the NAIA National Tournament, including their ninth appearance in the last 10 years. Tech has now played in the NAIA opening round championship game six years in a row.

1st Team All-Conference and World Series All-Tournament pitcher Sarah Abramson is among the key returners, having led the Cascade Conference last year in strikeouts with 229. 2nd Team All-Conference catcher McKenna Armantrout returns as well, along with Maddie Deverna who ranked No. 1 in the NAIA in fielding percentage.

Nine new players join the team this year, including junior standout pitcher Emily McAdams, who was the California Community College co-player of the year, along with Oregon 4-A co-player of the year Kaila Mick from Henley high school.

The Lady Owls ranked second in the CCC preseason poll despite the loss of seven seniors, including 1st Team NAIA and NFCA All American pitcher/DP Ali Graham – who led the team with a .418 batting average last year – and 1st Team All-Conference and ALL-NFCA first baseman Dre Sotelo – who led the CCC with 64 RBI – and second baseman Kiahna Brown.

The Lady Owls will kick off the season with a doubleheader against Pacific University in Medford, Oregon on February 1st at 12:00 pm, with games against Dominican University of California and Simpson California the following weekend in the Simpson Softball Tournament. The team will play their home opener and first Cascade Conference game on February 28th against College of Idaho at the John and Lois Stilwell Stadium.

2020 NAIA Softball Coaches’ Top 25 Preseason Poll- Janurary 15

RANK LAST WEEK SCHOOL [1ST PLACE VOTES] RECORD FINAL POINTS
1 1 Southern Oregon [18] 52-8 529
2 3 Science & Arts (Okla.) [1] 59-4 511
3 2 Oklahoma City 61-8 494
4 5 Marian (Ind.) 54-3 465
5 4 Georgia Gwinnett 46-16 454
5 6 Lindsey Wilson (Ky.) 52-5 454
7 7 Mobile (Ala.) 52-13 434
8 8 Oregon Tech 44-17 406
9 9 Vanguard (Calif.) 46-13 391
10 10 Valley City State (N.D.) 54-5 359
11 11 Hope International (Calif.) 46-14 353
12 13 Indiana Wesleyan 44-15-1 342
13 14 Campbellsville (Ky.) 35-15 308
14 18 Truett-McConnell (Ga.) 42-9 302
15 15 Olivet Nazarene (Ill.) 40-10 286
16 16 Columbia (Mo.) 37-12 284
17 17 Grand View (Iowa) 48-11 278
18 21 William Carey (Miss.) 37-16 230
19 20 College of Idaho 40-17 225
20 22 USC Beaufort (S.C.) 40-13 194
21 RV LSU Alexandria (La.) 34-16 180
22 24 Morningside (Iowa) 31-11 143
23 19 Houston-Victoria (Texas) 33-12 115
24 25 Corban (Ore.) 37-16 89
25 RV Marymount California 34-13 83

Receiving Votes: Brenau (Ga.) 76, Rio Grande (Ohio) 69, Bellevue (Neb.) 59, St. Francis (Ill.) 38, Central Baptist (Ark.) 34, Arizona Christian 30, Midland (Neb.) 28, Madonna (Mich.) 27, Taylor (Ind.) 26, Cumberlands (Ky.) 20, Coastal Georgia 19, Simpson (Calif.) 12, Martin Methodist (Tenn.) 10, Central Methodist (Mo.) 8, McPherson (Kan.) 8, Reinhardt (Ga.) 5, Lawrence Tech (Mich.) 5

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