Golden Bears receive 3 of a possible 9 first-place votes
SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (February 27, 2019) – The Western New England University softball team finished a close second to Endicott College in the 2019 Commonwealth Coast Conference (CCC) Preseason Coaches' Poll, which was released on Wednesday afternoon by the league office.
The Gulls were selected as the preseason favorite by a narrow margin with four first-place votes and 75 total points. Western New England received three first-place votes, finishing second with 72 points, while Salve Regina and the University of New England both earned one first-place nod and placed third and fourth, respectively, with 58 and 57 points.
The final five spots in the poll went to Nichols (40 points), Roger Williams (33), Gordon (31), Curry (29) and Wentworth (10).
Western New England is coming off a banner year last spring as the Golden Bears captured their second CCC title with an undefeated 4-0 run through the CCC Tournament.
Amanda Novak takes over as head coach after serving on Lori Mayhew-Wood's staff for seven seasons. Novak brings back five All-CCC performers from last year's squad, including juniors Aimee Kistner (Taunton, Mass.) and Paige Uliase (Meriden, Conn.). Kistner and Uliase won a combined 24 games and struck out 221 batters in 265 innings last spring. Kistner was also one of Western New England's top offensive threats, batting .308 with 11 doubles, five home runs and 26 RBI.
Western New England's season gets underway with a 12-game trip to Florida from March 16-22. The Golden Bears begin CCC play at Wentworth on March 31, before opening their home slate against Roger Williams on April 7.