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Long Beach State Picked To Finish Second In Softball
Shayna Kimbrough and the 49ers were tabbed to finish second prior to the season.

Shayna Kimbrough and the 49ers were tabbed to finish second prior to the season.

Feb. 3, 2014

Long Beach, Calif. - Long Beach State softball was picked to finish second in the preseason Big West Coaches Poll, as announced by the conference office on Monday. The 49ers received three first place votes, and were a close second behind last year's defending champions, Hawai'i.

The 49ers received 55 points, just behind Hawai'i, who took the top spot in the poll with four first place votes and 59 total points. The lone remaining first place vote went to Cal State Fullerton, who placed third with 46 points.

Rounding out the rest of the poll UC Santa Barbara was picked fourth, while UC Davis was selected fifth. Cal Poly edged out Cal State Northridge for the sixth spot, while UC Riverside was picked last with nine points in the eight-team league.

Long Beach State returns seven starters, including the reigning Big West Player of the Year in Shayna Kimbrough and last year's Freshman Player of the Year, Darian Tautalafua. Also returning for the 49ers are two more first-team All-Big West selections in pitcher Erin Jones-Wesley and outfielder Hannah De Gaetano.

The 49ers start the 2014 season this Thursday, hosting the Mizuno Invitational at the 49er Softball Complex. The season opener for Long Beach State will be against No. 12 Kentucky at 11:30 a.m. on February 6.

2014 Big West Softball Preseason Coaches Poll

1. Hawai'i (4) - 59
2. Long Beach State (3) - 55
3. Cal State Fullerton (1) - 46
4. UC Santa Barbara - 40
5. UC Davis - 30
6. Cal Poly - 25
7. Cal State Northridge - 24
8. UC Riverside - 9