NAPERVILLE, Ill. — Utah Valley finished just one point behind both Houston Baptist and North Dakota in the annual Great West Conference Softball Coaches’ Preseason Poll and are projected to finish third for the 2012 season. The poll was announced Wednesday by the league office.


Defending GWC champion HBU and 2010 champion UND barely edged out the Wolverines by tallying 12 points apiece. Each team also received one first-place vote. Despite two first-place votes, UVU finished third with 11 points, and GWC newcomer Nebraska-Omaha rounded out the preseason poll with five points.


The 2012 Great West Conference champion will be crowned at the GWC Softball Tournament held May 13-14, at Farmers Branch, Texas, hosted by Houston Baptist. The Huskies will also host a cluster event to determine GWC tournament seeding on March 23-25, also at the Dallas suburb of Farmers Branch.


After a 2-0 start to their season with two wins over Southern Utah last weekend, the Wolverine softball team hopes to continue its early season success by traveling to Los Angeles, Calif., to take on Loyola Marymount in a four-game series beginning on Saturday.



GWC 2012 Preseason Softball Poll

1. Houston Baptist (1) 12 pts.; North Dakota (1) 12 pts.
3. Utah Valley (2) 11 pts.
4. Nebraska-Omaha 5 pts.