ODAC coaches pick softball fourth

Mackenzie Chitwood hitting a softball in a game

Forest, Va. -- Fresh off the program's sixth-ever NCAA Division III tournament berth, University of Lynchburg's softball team enters the 2019 season picked fourth among the Old Dominion Athletic Conference's 11 teams, the ODAC announced with its preseason coaches' poll Wednesday afternoon.

Lynchburg picked up 77 points in the coaches' ballot, just one point behind third-picked Emory & Henry and well ahead of fifth choice Guilford (58 points).

Two-time defending national champion Virginia Wesleyan enters the season again as the league's favorite garnering 10 of the 11 first-place votes and the maximum number of possible points, 100. Randolph-Macon was the overwhelming second choice, picking up the remaining first-place nod and 90 points in the poll.

RELATED: 2019 ODAC softball preseason poll

Head coach Dawn Simmons enters her 21st season at the helm of the Hornets with vast experience back on her 2019 squad. The Hornets posted a 30-14 overall record a year ago, including a 12-6 mark in league play, and earned an at-large berth to the national tournament. Lynchburg received votes in the National Fastpitch Coaches' Association preseason top 25 poll, which also came out Wednesday.

Seven starters return for Lynchburg, highlighted by senior third baseman Taylor Mabry (Bassett, Va.), a second-team All-America selection last season. Junior infielder Sarah Commons (Glen Allen, Va.) returns after an All-South Region nod as Lynchburg's primary designated player a season ago. Two more All-ODAC picks in senior catcher Brittany Coffey (Manassas, Va.) and junior shortstop Kayla Hugate (Chesterfield, Va.) return for the Hornets as well.

Lynchburg opens this season this Saturday, Feb. 9, in Fayetteville, N.C., with a 1 p.m. double-dip at Methodist. The Hornets will wait until next month to make their home debut, a Saturday, March 2 doubleheader with Geneva on Moon Field.

RELATED: 2019 Lynchburg softball schedule

Visit Lynchburg athletics' home online, LynchburgSports.com, anytime for up-to-the-minute news on all Hornets sports and coverage from the Lynchburg Hornets Sports Network. Click here to sign up for email and text alerts from Lynchburg athletics.

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2019 ODAC SOFTBALL PRESEASON POLL

1. Virginia Wesleyan University (10)

100 pts.

2. Randolph-Macon College (1)

90 pts.

3. Emory & Henry College

78 pts.

4. University of Lynchburg

77 pts.

5. Guilford College

58 pts.

6. Roanoke College

56 pts.

7. Ferrum College

42 pts.

8. Eastern Mennonite University

38 pts.

9. Bridgewater College

27 pts.

10. Randolph College

23 pts.

11. Shenandoah University

16 pts.

--LYN--

Softball unveils 2019 schedule
September 13, 2018 Softball unveils 2019 schedule
Fri Aug 30
at Liberty University Challenge
Liberty University, Lynchburg, Va. | 4k races
Fri Aug 30
3:30 PM
Mary Baldwin
vs. Lynchburg
@ Eastern Mennonite University, Harrisonburg, Va. Route 42 Classic
Fri Aug 30
5:30 PM
Bryn Mawr
vs. Lynchburg
@ Eastern Mennonite University, Harrisonburg, Va. Route 42 Classic
Fri Aug 30
7:00 PM
Roanoke
vs. Lynchburg
Shellenberger Classic -- Non-conference match
Sat Aug 31
10:00 AM
Meredith
vs. Lynchburg
@ Eastern Mennonite University, Harrisonburg, Va. Route 42 Classic
Sat Aug 31
1:00 PM
Lebanon Valley
vs. Lynchburg
Sat Aug 31
2:00 PM
Catholic
vs. Lynchburg
@ Eastern Mennonite University, Harrisonburg, Va. Route 42 Classic
Sat Aug 31
3:00 PM
Lynchburg
vs. Johns Hopkins
@ Salem, Va. Roanoke College Kickoff
Sun Sep 01
3:00 PM
Mt. St. Mary (N.Y.)
vs. Lynchburg
@ Salem, Va. Roanoke College Kickoff
Fri Sep 06
5:00 PM
Shenandoah
vs. Lynchburg
@ Gallaudet University, Washington, D.C. Gallaudet Tournament
View Full Schedule
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No Event
Wed Aug 21
7:30 PM
Randolph
vs. Lynchburg
Scrimmage
Fri Aug 30
7:00 PM
Roanoke
vs. Lynchburg
Shellenberger Classic -- Non-conference match
Sat Sep 07
5:00 PM
Maryville (Tenn.)
vs. Lynchburg
@ Salem, Va. Roanoke Invitational
Sun Sep 08
4:30 PM
Regent
vs. Lynchburg
Wed Sep 11
7:00 PM
Mary Washington
vs. Lynchburg
Fri Sep 13
7:00 PM
Oglethorpe
vs. Lynchburg
Wed Sep 18
7:00 PM
Lynchburg
at Chris. Newport
Sat Sep 21
1:00 PM
Lynchburg
at Catholic
Wed Sep 25
7:00 PM
Washington and Lee
vs. Lynchburg
Non-conference match
Sat Sep 28
6:00 PM
Lynchburg
at Roanoke
Wed Oct 02
4:00 PM
Lynchburg
at Bridgewater (Va.)
Non-conference match
Wed Oct 09
7:00 PM
Randolph-Macon
vs. Lynchburg
Sat Oct 12
7:00 PM
Lynchburg
at Hampden-Sydney
No Event
View Full Schedule
Sat Aug 31
3:00 PM
Lynchburg
vs. Johns Hopkins
@ Salem, Va. Roanoke College Kickoff
Sun Sep 01
3:00 PM
Mt. St. Mary (N.Y.)
vs. Lynchburg
@ Salem, Va. Roanoke College Kickoff
Sat Sep 07
12:00 PM
Maryville (Tenn.)
vs. Lynchburg
Shellenberger Classic -- Match 1
Sun Sep 08
2:00 PM
Kalamazoo
vs. Lynchburg
Shellenberger Classic -- Match 3
Sat Sep 14
11:00 AM
Lynchburg
at Emory
Sun Sep 15
11:00 AM
Lynchburg
at Piedmont
Piedmont Invitational
Wed Sep 25
6:00 PM
Lynchburg
at Chris. Newport
Sat Sep 28
1:00 PM
Lynchburg
at Washington and Lee
Sat Oct 05
1:00 PM
Bridgewater (Va.)
vs. Lynchburg
Wed Oct 09
4:00 PM
Randolph
vs. Lynchburg
Sat Oct 12
4:00 PM
Lynchburg
at East. Mennonite
No Event
No Event
No Event
No Event
View Full Schedule