Photo Courtesy: UA Athletics (Gunnar Rathbun)
FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. (Univ. of Ark.) - The University of Arkansas softball team entered the USA Today/NFCA poll for the first time in program history on Tuesday. The Razorbacks are ranked No. 25.
The USA Today/NFCA Division I Top 25 Poll is voted on by 31 NCAA Division I head coaches, one representing each conference. The Razorbacks have entered this week's poll after a sweep of Auburn last weekend in which the Hogs outscored the Tigers 19-7 in three games.
Leading the way for the Razorbacks was sophomore pitcher Kimmy Beasley. The Foreman, Ark. native received the win in games one and three after pitching 12 innings of shutout softball. She recorded a career-high 15 strikeouts in game one and followed with seven in game three. Arkansas had to come back from a four-run deficit in game two and defeated Auburn 8-7 in eight innings. In the game two win, Devon Wallace walked five times and scored four runs. In the game one win, Wallace set the SEC single season walks record, passing Alabama's Cassie Reilly-Boccia's total of 66.Wallace currently has an NCAA-leading 74 walks. The Razorbacks have now won eight of their last nine games and four straight.
Oklahoma maintained its position as the No. 1 team in the poll for the ninth straight week. Five of the top 10 teams in the poll represent the Southeastern Conference. Wisconsin was the only team to drop out of the Top 25. The Badgers dropped their weekend series at Michigan State to make room for the Razorbacks.
Arkansas is currently ranked No. 22 in the ESPN/USA Softball poll, which will be released later today.
This week begins postseason play for the Razorbacks. They will take on No. 11 Missouri on Thursday at 3:00 p.m. CT. The second round game of the SEC tournament will be broadcast on ESPNU. The No. 6 seed earned in the SEC Tournament is the highest seed received by a Razorback team since 2002.