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Northwest Bearcats

Press Release

Jan. 29, 2009

Softball Picked Fourth By Coaches

MARYVILLE, Mo.-Northwest Missouri State University softball team tied with Washburn for the fourth spot in the 2009 MIAA Softball Preseason Coaches Poll released Thursday.

Defending MIAA champion and national runner-up Emporia State tied conference newcomer Nebraska-Omaha for the top spot. Central Missouri, who will begin 2009 with the highest national ranking among league foes, was picked third.

The Bearcats were 32-22 last year and made their fourth-ever appearance in the NCAA tournament. Northwest was 11-7 in the MIAA, good for third place, and also took third in the postseason MIAA tournament.

The Bearcats return seven starters (5 position, 1 designated player, 1 pitcher) from last year's squad, including first-team all-region outfielder Casey Carper (Sr., Sulphur Springs, Texas) and unanimous first-team all-MIAA second baseman Erin Leslie (Jr., Shawnee, Kan.)

Carper led the team with a .411 batting average and shattered the program record for triples in a season with 11. Leslie led Northwest with 49 runs scored. She batted .338 with four home runs and 28 RBIs.

Returning to the circle is senior Cola Krueger (Blue Springs, Mo.), a 13-game winner in 2008. Krueger posted a 3.35 ERA in 41 appearances. She threw four shutouts, struck out 98 batters and held opponents to a .254 average.

Head Coach Ryan Anderson is in his third season with the Bearcats. He's posted 57 wins at Northwest and has totaled 171 victories in six years as a collegiate head coach.

2009 MIAA Preseason Coaches' Poll

   School                    Pts. 1. Emporia State (5)           94    Nebraska-Omaha (4)          94 3. Central Missouri(2)        84 4. Northwest Missouri State    66    Washburn                    66 6. Missouri Western            51    Pittsburg State             51 8. Truman                      36 9. Fort Hays State             2910. Missouri Southern           2411. Southwest Baptist           10

Points awarded on a 10-9-8-7-6-5-4-3-2-1 basis.
Coaches could not vote for their own school.

For more information, please contact:

Media Relations Department, Northwest Athletics | 660.562.1118 | Fax: 660.562.1582

Northwest Athletics
Lamkin Activity Center | 800 University Drive | Maryville, MO 64468