LOUISVILLE, Ky. -- The Trine softball team is ranked No. 22 in the latest National Fastpitch Coaches Association Division III Top 25 poll, released this morning.
The Thunder received votes totaling 36 points in the final poll before the NCAA postseason. Trine was ranked No. 14 in last week's poll and has been ranked as high as fourth in the nation this season. The team earned its 10th consecutive NCAA Regionals appearance and will travel to Whitewater, Wis. to face Greenville College in the opening round. The Thunder earned one of 20 available at-large bids carry an overall record of 32-8 into postseason action.
Trine finished with a 3-4 record against teams ranked in this week's Top 25 poll. The Thunder earned victories over Luther (No. 3), Messiah (No. 12) and Ramapo (no. 18). The team finished with a 10-6 record against teams appearing in the NCAA postseason.
A powerful lineup led Trine to the No. 1 national ranking in home runs per game this year with 53 in 40 contests. Kaylee Fox (Vermilion, Ohio / Edison) led the way with 15 homers, the second-most in the nation. The three-time All-MIAA First Team performer became the school's all-time leader in career home runs earlier this season and has 44 career homers entering the postseason.
Makenna Hartline (Niles, Mich. / Brandywine) hit 11 home runs to rank 11th in the nation, while Carly Bachna's (Elyria, Ohio / Elyria) 10 homers ranked 22nd in Division III. Makenna Hartline, Michaela Hartline (Niles, Mich. / Brandywine), Catherine Porter (Canton, Mich. / Plymouth Canton) and Claire Ryan (Union Grove, Wis. / Union Grove) each earned All-MIAA Second Team honors. Trine's Second Team honorees combined to hit 23 home runs. The Thunder ranked seventh in the nation with a .534 slugging percentage.
Danielle Ray (Hamilton, Ohio / Badin) is one of 25 candidates for the Schutt Sports/NFCA Division III National Player of the Year award. Ray ranks 37th in the nation with 138 strikeouts at a rate of 7.3 per seven innings, the 39th-best rate in the country. The All-MIAA First Team performer owns a 16-3 record to go along with a 1.90 ERA and four saves.
Trine opens play in the Whitewater Regional against Greenville tomorrow at 1 p.m. CDT. The Thunder will be seeking its second consecutive NCAA Regional title. No. 7 Wisconsin-Whitewater and MIAA foe Hope make up the other half of the Regional bracket.