TERRE HAUTE, IND. -- The Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology softball team has been picked to finish sixth in the Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference this season, in a preseason poll of league coaches released today.
The Fightin' Engineers received 34 poll points to place sixth in the poll. The top four finishers will qualify for the HCAC Softball Tournament in May.
Anderson University earned the top spot with 76 points and six first-place votes. Transylvania University was picked second with 73 points and a pair of first-place votes.
Bluffton received the remaining first place vote and was picked third, followed by Defiance and Manchester. Rose-Hulman was picked sixth, with Mount St. Joseph, Hanover and Franklin rounding out the projections.
Rose-Hulman finished sixth in the HCAC last season with an overall record of 13-21. The Fightin' Engineers finished 6-10 in conference play.
Offensively, Rose-Hulman returns six offensive starters and two of the team's three pitchers from the 2011 season. The Fightin' Engineers also feature seven freshmen who will immediate compete for playing time.
Rose-Hulman opens the season in Florida on February 27.