NEW ORLEANS – On the eve of the 2017 campaign, the Anderson University women's cross country team is ranked second in the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA) DII Preseason Regional Rankings, while the men's squad is tabbed ninth, as released Tuesday afternoon.
The women's squad, which was selected third in the South Atlantic Conference Coaches' Preseason Poll, is one of three South Atlantic Conference teams in the USTFCCCA poll, along with top-ranked Queens and Wingate (fifth). AU was ranked fourth in last season's final poll.
Mount Olive and North Georgia followed the Trojans, with Wingate in fifth and Augusta occupying the sixth slot. Flagler, UNC Pembroke, Georgia College and Limestone rounded out the women's rankings.
The men's poll was slightly more balanced, with four schools from the SAC, four from the Peach Belt and a pair of teams from Conference Carolinas.
Perennial regional power Mount Olive topped the preseason rankings, while Queens and Mars Hill were second and third, respectively. Peach Belt schools occupied the next four slots, as Augusta paced the PBC teams in fourth. Flagler was fifth and UNC Pembroke sixth, while Columbus State vaulted six spots from last season's final poll into the seventh slot.
Lincoln Memorial and AU were steady at eighth and ninth, with Lees-McRae rounding out the poll in 10th.
Anderson opens the season at Friday's USC Upstate Eye Opener.