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Ute softball team rises to level of competition, beating ranked Pac-12 teams

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Posted at 10:39 PM, May 04, 2015
and last updated 2015-05-05 00:39:49-04

SALT LAKE CITY -- The University of Utah softball team is one of the most dominant softball teams in the country and has won every series against higher ranked teams since no. 2 Oregon in March. They are currently no. 24 in the ESPN.com poll.

"We haven't stopped working," said Head Coach Amy Hogue. "Even in the losses, we have gotten better, and some of that hard work is paying off now. It's equating to wins finally."

The players are also excited about their season.

"We are playing really well; we are playing as a team," said sophomore second base Hannah Flippen.

"Our pitchers are doing well and if they do happen to leave a ball up, our defense picks it up and it just works really well," senior Kate Dickman said.

"I think we are on a good roll right now and we can't be stopped," Flippen said.

It is the first time in 14 years that the Utes softball team has been ranked and the first time ever ranked in the ESPN.com poll. They are happy for the recognition, but refuse to let it control them.

"It's been nice to see other people recognize the work we've done. But, we haven't changed how we do anything at all," Hogue said.

The same sentiment is felt throughout the team.

"It's nice that we are recognized at the national level but it really doesn't change anything. It's just a number," Dickman said.

"I think we can handle any team that comes our way. Now, people are starting to realize that," Flippen said.

The girls say that this program is more than just a team to them - and they still have many goals to accomplish in the coming weeks.

"It's a family. I love my teammates and I love my coaches. It's the greatest team I have ever played for in all honesty," Flippen said.

"It's exactly what I had hoped for. Our season is far from over. We still have some big goals and some big dreams to reach," Dickman said.

Their next series starts on May 7 against No. 18 Washington in Salt Lake City.