Feb. 9, 2016
BOISE, Idaho â€" Boise State softball was tabbed ninth in the Mountain West Preseason Coaches Poll, the conference announced Tuesday.
Fresno State was picked to successfully defend their 2015 Mountain West title, picking up eight of the nine first-place votes and a total of 64 points. San Diego State garnered the remaining first-place vote and 57 points to come in second, while San Jose State (49 points), New Mexico (34) and UNLV (31) rounded out the top five.
Utah State (28), Colorado State (27) and Nevada (26) were in positions six through eight, respectively, while the Broncos earned eight points in the voting.
Boise State, helmed by second-year head coach Cindy Ball, went 12-42 overall and 4-20 in Mountain West play last season. The Broncos open the 2016 campaign this weekend at the Kajikawa Classic in Tempe, Ariz., beginning with a doubleheader Thursday against Creighton (4:30 p.m.) and Virginia (7 p.m.). Saturday, the Broncos take on Maryland (2:30 p.m.) and San Diego (5 p.m) before closing the weekend Sunday morning against Bradley (9 a.m.).
Boise State's 2016 roster features 13 returners along with 10 newcomers. Top returners at the plate include senior outfielder Kayla Clausen (.339, 38 hits, 11 doubles, five home runs, 16 RBI, nine stolen bases, team-best .589 slugging pct. In 2015) and sophomore left fielder/third base Makenzie Sullivan (.259, 37 hits, team-high 13 doubles, six home runs, 30 RBI in 2015), while in the circle senior Nicole Wilson (3-12, 4.85 ERA, two saves, 36 strikeouts in 2015) and junior Mackenzie McGill (3-8, 53.2 innings pitched, 16 strikeouts) are joined in the Bronco rotation by transfers junior Jenna Bassler and redshirt sophomore Paige Reiman along with freshman Shawna Burke.
2016 MW Softball Preseason Coaches' Poll
Pl. Team (1st-place votes) Points
1. Fresno State (8) 64
2. San Diego State (1) 57
3. San José State 49
4. New Mexico 34
5. UNLV 31
6. Utah State 28
7. Colorado State 27
8. Nevada 26
9. Boise State 8