After beginning the season ranked third in the preseason poll, the University of Washington Huskies (from left, Liberty Miller, Lindsay Flanagan, Katie Flood, Christine Babcock, Kailey Campbell, Mel Lawrence, Justine Johnson & Mackenzie Carter/photo by Paul Merca) dropped to 13th, and then down to 20th in the national rankings. Their Pac-10 showing pushed them back up to 11th, and then Saturday's Regional victory boosted UW's standing back up to No. 4. The win was UW's first since the Sundodger Invitational back in September.
The Wildcats of Villanova maintained their #1 ranking, and will look to claim repeat national titles for the first time since their six-year title run from 1989 to 1994. Villanova has won eight national titles in women’s cross country, the most for a Division I squad. Only Stanford (5) and BYU (4) join Villanova in having won more than two.
No. 2 Florida State, runner-up in 2009, easily won the NCAA South Regional last weekend and will look to challenge Villanova for their first-ever national title. The Seminoles have reached a trophy finishes (top four) in each of the last three years.
Georgetown moved up two spots to No. 3 after they came within 11 points of Villanova in the NCAA Mid-Atlantic Regional. The Hoyas, with four in the top ten, scored just 40 points in their challenge of Villanova’s 29. Georgetown, making their 22nd appearance at the national meet, has three times finished third in the meet, with the last coming in 2001.
The Huskies in the 4 spot are then followed by No. 5 New Mexico, No. 6 Oregon, No. 7 Stanford, No. 8 Colorado, No. 9 Arizona, and No. 10 Texas Tech.
The ustfccca.org release can be read here.
Courtesy of gohuskies.com, UW coach Greg Metcalf recaps the NCAA West Regional meet, where his women’s squad emerged victorious for the third year in a row, putting the Huskies in position to make another run at the podium on Monday.
paulmerca.blogspot.com will be in Terre Haute to provide coverage of the NCAA cross country championships.
NOTE: The University of Washington sports information office and the USTFCCCA contributed to this report.