Morningside is tabbed for a first place finish in the GPAC Softball Coaches’ Preseason Poll.

Morningside is picked to win the 2018 GPAC softball championship in the GPAC Softball Coaches’ Preseason Poll.

The Mustangs received 72 points and seven of the 11 first place votes to top the preseason poll by a four-point margin over Concordia, which finished second in the preseason poll without a first place vote. Hastings, tabbed for a third place finish with 66 points, received two first place votes, while Dordt and Midland each had one first place vote.

Morningside, ranked 15 nationally in the NAIA Softball Coaches’ Preseason Top 25 Poll, returns three starters and its No. 2 pitcher from a team that posted a 40-12 record and won the GPAC championship with a 17-3 league mark for a three-game victory margin over runner-ups Hastings College and Concordia University (14-6). The Mustangs competed in last year’s NAIA Softball National Championship Opening Round Sioux City Bracket for their eighth national tournament appearance in the last nine years.