BIRMINGHAM, Ala. -- Junior pitcher Aubrion James was named to the 2019 Preseason All-SWAC second team and the Southern University Jaguars was selected to finish third in the Western Division announced by the Southwestern Athletic Conference Friday Afternoon.
The SWAC revealed its 2019 Preseason Softball honors, with familiar faces expected to finish atop divisional standings. Alabama State was selected as the early favorite for the Eastern Division, while in the Western Division, defending 2018 Western Division Champion Texas Southern and 2018 SWAC Softball Tournament Champion Prairie View A&M project as co-favorites.
The vote was conducted by the league’s Sports Information Directors and Head Coaches.
James was the lone Jaguar to be selected to the All-SWAC team after a stellar sophomore season.
The Madison, Alabama native, who started every game for the Jaguars in 2018, appeared in 27 games with 18 starts in the circle, tied third in the league with 11 wins, pitching 135 innings, recording 60 strikeouts, a career high 2 saves and three shutouts. The duel threat recorded 24 hits, 12 RBIs, 16 runs and 16 stolen bases. Despite her impressive number last season, she missed the All-SWAC team.
Southern is set to open the season at home hosting the Chef Celeste Softball Challenge that will field two teams from the Middle Eastern Athletic Conference (Howard University, and North Carolina Central University) and three teams from the SWAC (Southern, Prairie View A&M, and Alabama State). The tournament will be held February 8-10, on the campus of Southern University at Jaguars Field.
Eastern Division Predicted Order of Finish (1st place votes)
Alabama State, 82 points (9)
Alcorn, 75 points (7)
Alabama A&M, 52 points (1)
Mississippi Valley State, 42 points (2)
Jackson State, 34 points (0)
Western Division Predicted Order of Finish (1st place votes)
Prairie View A&M, 82 points (9)
Texas Southern, 82 points (9)
Southern, 53 points (0)
Arkansas-Pine Bluff, 41 points (1)
Grambling State, 27 points (0)
Preseason First-Team All-SWAC Softball
1B – Laurisa Hernandez, Prairie View A&M
2B – Tamia-Lee Barbadillo, Alabama A&M
3B – Kristin Gunter, Alabama State
SS – Amari Ramsey, Alcorn
C – Marissa Padron, Texas Southern
OF – Kelsey Smith, Jackson State
OF – Kailyn Dunn, Mississippi Valley State
OF – Amira James, Alabama State
DP – Charlene Castro, Alabama State
P – Lauren Hayden, Alabama A&M
P – Justine Jean, Alabama State
P – Crystal Castillo, Prairie View A&M
Second-Team All-SWAC Softball
1B – Victoria Tyler, Alcorn
2B – Ebony Wiltz, Texas Southern
3B – Jodeci Afoa-Tuia, Mississippi Valley State
SS – Alexandria Taylor, UAPB
C – Alyssa Garcia, Prairie View A&M
OF – Tevanae Tate, Texas Southern
OF – Julia Bilbao, Texas Southern
OF – Kaylee Davis, Alabama State
DP – DeShonte Smith, Mississippi Valley State
P – Aubrion James, Southern
P – Juliana Dominguez, UAPB
P – Tyra Williams, Texas Southern
SWAC Softball Preseason Hitter of the Year
Laurisa Hernandez, Prairie View A&M
SWAC Softball Preseason Pitcher of the Year
Justine Jean, Alabama State