Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Huskies remain #1 in USTFCCCA final regular season rankings...

The Washington Huskies (left/photo from NCAA regionals by Paul Merca) showed why they are the nation's top collegiate team on Saturday as they followed up a dominating Pac-10 performance with a similar result in the West Regional. The Huskies finished first as a team despite running without freshman Kendra Schaaf.

The Huskies scored 25 team points en route to the title as five of their seven runners finished in the top-10. Washington's victory helped the team retain its No. 1 ranking as the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA) released the final women's cross country poll of the 2008 season.

Oregon remains the second ranked team in the country followed by Florida State at No. 3. Oregon was the runner-up in Saturday's West Regional. The Ducks were paced by the one-two finish of Alexandra Kosinski and Nicole Blood. Florida State won the South Regional title over in-state rival Florida. Susan Kuijken led the way for the Seminoles with her third-place finish overall. Six Seminole runners finished in the top-25.

Princeton and West Virginia are ranked fourth and fifth respectively. The two teams tied for first place in the Mid-Atlantic Region with 51 points. Minnesota (No. 6) and Villanova (No. 7) follow Princeton with Michigan, Texas Tech and Wisconsin rounding out the women's top-10. Michigan improved nine spots from the previous poll after winning the Great Lakes Regional title. Nicole Edwards led the way for the Maize and Blue finishing second overall.

Texas Tech won its first Mountain Regional title with the help of standout All-American Sally Kipyego. Kipyego won her third straight Mountain Regional title.

Arkansas, winners of the South Central region, is ranked 11th, followed by Stanford, Michigan State, Illinois and Arizona State. Florida is ranked 16th following its runner-up finish in the South, with Georgetown and Baylor close behind.

No. 22 Rice moves up three spots this week following the Owls' second-place finish in the South Central regional. Junior Nicole Mericle led the way for the Owls winning the individual championship.

Providence won the Northeast Regional title and is ranked 20th, followed by New Mexico, the Mountain Regional runner-up.

Up seven spots this week at No. 22 is Nebraska. The Cornhuskers finished third in the Midwest Regional. Iowa, fourth in the Midwest, is ranked 23rd. Southern Methodist and Syracuse are ranked Nos. 24 and 25.

Northern Arizona moves up two spots to No. 26, while Boston College remains at No. 27. Virginia won the Southeast Regional title and enters the poll at No. 28 followed by Stony Brook and Notre Dame.

In the men's rankings, Oregon, Oklahoma State and Stanford remain in the top three spots heading to Monday's national championship meet.

The University of Washington men's team moves up two spots to number 21 in the final regular season rankings.

The NCAA Division I Cross Country National Championships will take place on Monday, November 24th, 2008 and is hosted by Indiana State University. It will be televised by CBS College Sports (channel 412 in Seattle/Comcast), and streamed online via ncaa.com and cstv.com, with Lewis Johnson, Larry Rawson & Carrie Tollefson providing commentary, starting at 9 am, Pacific (Noon, eastern).

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