Tuesday, August 29, 2017

Cougar men ranked #11; Husky women #13 in USTFCCCA pre-season national XC poll...

NEW ORLEANS—The Washington State University men’s cross country team (above/photo by Paul Merca) got a jolt of positive energy Tuesday when the USTFCCCA Division I pre-season poll was released, with the Cougars finding themselves ranked number 11 in the country, after finishing 14th at last season's NCAA championships.

In the USTFCCCA era, this is the highest that a Washington State team has been ranked since 1998 when the Cougs, led by WSU hall of famer and Olympian Bernard Lagat was ranked number 10 in that year’s pre-season poll.

This is also the first time that a WSU team has been ranked in the national top 30 at the start of the season since 2012, when they were ranked #26 under former coach Tim Riley.

The men’s national top five are defending national champion Northern Arizona, followed by Stanford, Syracuse, Arkansas and defending Pac-12 champion Colorado.

Other Pac-12 schools in the national top 30 include number 9 Oregon and number 25 UCLA.

On the women’s side, the University of Washington will begin the season ranked number 13 in the national poll.

Pac-12 champion Colorado begins the year ranked number 1, followed by defending NCAA champion Oregon.  Michigan, New Mexico (which gained former Husky Charlotte Prouse), and Stanford round out the top 5 in the women’s pre-season poll.

Utah is the only other women’s team ranked in the national top-30 from the Pac-12, coming in at number 22.

Washington State opens up their season Friday in Colfax with a low-key meet featuring their alumni, while Washington opens the season Friday with a non-scoring meet at Seattle’s Magnuson Park against Seattle University.


In Zagreb, Croatia, former Puget Sound resident Devon Allen was second in the 110 hurdles at the Borisa Hanzekovica meet Tuesday.

Allen ran 13.19 to finish behind Sergey Shubenkov of Russia, competing as an authorized neutral athlete.  Shubenkov, the silver medalist at the London world championships, ran 13.12 to take the victory.

Vancouver native Kara Winger finished fifth in the javelin with a best of 198-3 (60.44m), as Canada’s Liz Gleadle won with a throw of 208-0 (63.40m).

NOTE:  The USTFCCCA and the sports information offices of Washington State University and the University of Washington contributed to this report.

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