Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Husky women's cross country squad hangs on to third in latest USTFCCCA national poll...

Despite not running NCAA All-Americans Mel Lawrence (left/photo by Paul Merca) and Christine Babcock in either of its first two meets, the University of Washington women's cross country team held its number three national ranking in the latest USTFCCCA poll released Tuesday.

Defending national champion Villanova remained number one in the women's national poll, followed by Florida State, then the Huskies, followed by Texas Tech, which overtook Oregon for fourth, bumping the Ducks down to fifth.

In the men's national poll, Washington received 4 votes, and is outside the national top 30.

The USTFCCCA Division I national men's and women's poll can be viewed here.

In Division II, the Western Washington men's and women's squads maintained their #6 and #7 national rankings, even though both Viking squads were idol last week.

Western competes this Saturday in Lacey at the Saint Martin's Invitational.

One significant deletion from the national D2 rankings were the Seattle Pacific Falcon women's squad, which dropped out of the national top 25 after being ranked #14 in the pre-season poll.

The Falcons finished eighth in last week's Sundodger Invitational open section, won by Simon Fraser.

Seattle Pacific, which didn't run number one runner Natty Plunkett, will send a small group to Lacey as well to run in Saturday's Saint Martin's Invitational.

The USTFCCCA Division II top 25 rankings are available here.

In Division III, Spokane's Whitworth College jumped up to #19 in the national poll after winning the open section of the Sundodger last week. Its women's team, which finished third at Sundodger, dropped to #19 after being ranked #11 in the previous poll.

The USTFCCCA Division III national rankings are available here.

In other college news, the University of Oregon will host the 2011 NCAA West Regional track & field championships on May 26-28th at Hayward Field, while Indiana University will host the East Regionals at the same time.

As was the case last May in Austin, the regional championships serve as a preliminary round to the NCAA championships, which will be held two weeks later in Des Moines, Iowa at Drake University.

Finally, Jessica Pixler, a 12-time NCAA cross country and track champion from Seattle Pacific, who now has started her graduate work at the University of Colorado, was named the NCAA Division II Female Scholar-Athlete of the Year by the Division II Conference Commissioners Association.

The release from Seattle Pacific University can be read here.

NOTE:  The USTFCCCA and the sports information office of Seattle Pacific University contributed to this report.

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