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Softball C-USA Preseason No. 1 (or 1A); S-Tex Preseason All-Conference

Five of the dozen Conference USA coaches took the easy way out on voting. They saw an FIU team that finished 33-20, 15-9 in Conference USA last season and returns almost everybody, including pitchers Corinne Jenkins and Shelby Graves and C-USA Freshman of the Year Stephanie Texeira.

So those five coaches voted FIU as the preseason conference favorite. FIU shares that spot with last year's conference runner-up, Alabama-Birmingham, which also pulled five first-place votes. FAU and Marshall got the other two. Texeira, who hit .408 with 11 homers, 41 RBI and a .740 slugging percentage last year, was the only Panther on the preseason all-conference team.

FIU hosts the Conference USA tournament this year on Felsberg Field at FIU Softball Stadium. Hopefully, they'll have a replacement for this Reagan Era-locker room building they share with tennis by then.

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