Tide Softball Has 3 Preseason All-SEC

Alabama softball has made a name for itself as one of the nation's most outstanding programs. That is in great part because Bama has some of the most outstanding players. Three of those have been selected by the league coaches for preseason All-Southeastern Conference.



No one who has been paying attention would be surprised at the Alabama representatives on the preseason All-SEC team. They are Kaila Hunt, Haylie McCleney, and Jackie Traina.

Alabama and Georgia lead the conference with three athletes each on the list, followed by Auburn, Florida and Tennessee with two each. The list is comprised of six sophomores, four juniors and five seniors. All three of Alabama's All-SEC honorees also made the preseason Top 50 Watch List for the USA Softball Player of the Year.

Hunt, a senior infielder from Evans, Ga., has been a consistent source of power in the Alabama lineup over the past three years. She enters the 2014 season with 46 career home runs, just 15 shy of breaking Kelly Kretschman's school record. Hunt is a two-time All-American and, last season, she became the sixth player in Alabama history to earn NFCA All-American and CoSIDA Academic All-American honors in the same season. This is her second-straight appearance on the preseason All-SEC team.

McCleney, a Morris native, had a breakout freshman season in for the Tide in 2013, hitting .465 with 14 doubles, 41 RBI and 30 stolen bases. She earned second team All-American honors and played with the U.S. Junior National Team during the summer of 2013.

Traina, a senior pitcher from Naples, Fla., makes her third-straight appearance on the preseason list. She is a true dual-threat, ranking among the top five in multiple career pitching and hitting records at Alabama. During the Crimson Tide's 2012 national championship season, she pitched every inning of the Tide's run in Oklahoma City, earning Most Outstanding Player. She is the seventh three-time All-America in Alabama history.

The Crimson Tide opens its season this weekend at the Troy Subway Invitational. Alabama will play five games over three days, beginning on Friday against Kennesaw State at 2:30 p.m. CST.