Tuesday, October 20, 2015

Both Washington squads back in national top-20 in final regular-season USTFCCCA poll...

NEW ORLEANS—Both University of Washington cross country squads are back in the final regular season USTFCCCA national Division I rankings that were released Tuesday after a strong showing at the adidas Wisconsin Invitational last week.

The Husky men’s team (above/photo by Paul Merca), which finished 13th in Madison, jumped back into the #20 spot in the national coaches’ poll after being bumped out of the rankings after losing the Sundodger Invitational to cross-state rival Washington State last month.  Washington was led by Izaic Yorks’ seventh place finish, his highest career finish in a major invitational race.

On the men’s side, the nation’s top five teams, according to the coaches who vote are Colorado, Syracuse, Oregon, BYU, and Michigan.

Other Pac-12 teams ranked nationally include #15 UCLA, #21 California, and #23 Stanford.

The Washington women, who finished eighth at the adidas Wisconsin meet, dropped two spots to #12.  As she had in every race, All-American Maddie Meyers led the way for the Huskies in Madison, finishing 29th.

The women’s top five teams in the latest poll are New Mexico, Michigan, Colorado, Arkansas, and Oregon.

Other Pac-12 teams ranked nationally include #10 Stanford, and #19 Utah.

The next national poll will be released after the various conference championships, which occur October 30-31st. The USTFCCCA poll is available here.

ON THE COURSE:  Sarah Reiter (left/photo by Paul Merca) of Eastern Washington was named the Big Sky Conference athlete of the week for her 16th place finish at the Pre-Nationals meet in Louisville.  

The Renton junior’s efforts led the Eagles to a 13th place finish, beating several nationally ranked teams.  While this blog pays little heed to the USTFCCCA’s regional rankings, the Eagles were ranked #6 in this week’s West Regional poll, a program best.

Reiter is the defending Big Sky cross country champion.

Last Saturday, Gonzaga swept both the men’s and women’s team titles at the Inland Empire Challenge in Lewiston, Idaho.

The Zag’s Shelby Mills was third in the women’s 6k race in 16:56, leading two other Bulldogs across the line in the top seven, while Troy Fraley led the way in the men’s 8k in a time of 24:17 with his fourth pace finish, as they placed three runners in the top ten.

NOTE:  The USTFCCCA, along with the sports information offices of Eastern Washington and Gonzaga, contributed to this report.

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