Senior Tess Sito
Jan. 29, 2013
ATHENS, Ga. - The University of Georgia softball team comes in at No. 8 in the ESPN.com/USA Softball preseason poll and is No. 9 according the USA Today/NFCA Division I Top 25 Preseason Poll.
The Bulldogs return eight players from the 2012 team that made Georgia's 11th appearance in the postseason. Among the returners is Southeastern Conference All-Freshman team, SEC All-Tournament team and NFCA All-Region team member Paige Wilson. The Bulldogs also welcome back all-region selection Tess Sito and two-year starting pitcher Morgan Montemayor.
Wilson, who hit .342 with nine home runs and 10 doubles last season, is Georgia's leading offensive returner, followed by Sito, who finished last season with a .305 average and eight home runs. Also returning for the Bulldogs are Anna Swafford, Niaja Griffin, Christine Olney, Maya Branch and Tiesha Reed.
In addition to the returners, Georgia welcomes eight freshmen to the program, including Gatorade National Softball Player of the Year Geri Ann Glasco. In all, seven of Georgia's newcomers were ranked in ESPN's Top-100, the most of any Division I program.
Montemayor is Georgia top returning pitcher. The junior recorded nine wins last season and finished with 135 strikeouts.
Joining Georgia in the top-10 are four other schools from the SEC. Alabama opens the season as the top-ranked team in both polls, followed by No. 5/6 Tennessee, No. 7/8 Missouri and LSU, ranked 12th in the ESPN.com/USA Softball poll and 10th in the USA Today/NFCA poll. Florida checks in at No. 15/14, while Texas A&M ranks 17 in both polls.
Georgia 2013 campaign begins Feb. 8-10 when it welcomes Ohio State, Elon and Winthrop to Athens, Ga. for the Sixth Annual Red and Black Showcase.