Boston, Mass.—UMBC baseball was picked to finish fifth by the coaches of the America East Conference, the conference office announced on Wednesday.
The Retrievers are coming off a 28-23 season, going 13-10 in America East play, finishing the regular season in fourth place. UMBC fell to Albany (8-5) and Maine (11-1) in the America East Tournament a year ago.
Defending champion Binghamton was picked to finish atop the conference in a unanimous decision, garnering six first place votes. Last year the Bearcats knocked off then-defending champion Stony Brook in the title game.
The Seawolves were picked second, earning 30 points, just ahead of Hartford (26) and Maine (22).
The Retrievers (13) are followed by Albany (11) and UMass Lowell (9) to round out the seven-team field.
UMBC brings back seven position starters from last year, including a slew of pitchers that will look to bring the Black and Gold back to the top of the conference.
The Retrievers open the season at the Liberty Tournament Feb. 24-26, facing host Liberty (Feb. 24) and St. John's (Feb. 25-26). UMBC will have their home opener against Towson on March 8 with conference play kicking off March 18-19 against Maine at Alumni Field.
2017 America East Preseason Coaches Poll
1. Binghamton – 36 (6 first place votes)
2. Stony Brook - 30
3. Hartford - 26
4. Maine - 22
5. UMBC - 13
6. Albany - 11
7. UMass Lowell - 9