The Lady Bisons were one of four Atlantic Sun teams to be included in the top 65. Florida Gulf Coast was rated 27th, Mercer was 53rd and Campbell, the A-Sun Tournament Champion and NCAA representative in 2009, was 64th.
Lady Bisons coach Kristin Peck views the ranking as just another yardstick to measure how far the softball program has progressed. The Lady Bisons set a program record for wins in a season in the NCAA era with 38. They also set a new mark for fewest losses in a season with 14. The pitching staff combined for 18 shutouts, also a program record.
“It is definitely as positive,” said Peck. “They take winning percentage, strength of schedule, your road wins, your home wins and how many wins you have against the top 25, top 50 and top 100 teams to come up with the number.
“To be the highest we have ever been on the list and to be ahead of some substantial, big name teams means a lot as to how far we have come as a program, especially over the last few years and even when I was a player here.”
The Lady Bisons did not have a senior on the team last season and return all of their starters for the 2010 season.
“We are going to have a full team of returners and we have added some good pieces to that,” said Peck.
The Atlantic Sun moved up from 12th to No. 10 in the RPI conference ratings.
“I feel like softball is one of the sports that has gone a little bit unnoticed as to what we have done as a conference,” said Peck. “We have had a lot of transition like every other sport in the conference with teams jumping in and out. It has been hard to maintain a higher ranking as a conference.
“We have coaches that are very, very competitive in softball. They want to get out there and get their hands dirty and challenge some of the bigger schools and see what they can do. We have nothing to lose going up against those bigger and higher ranked schools. It is only going to make us better.”