FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Nov. 7, 2008
Contact: K.E. Schwab
Rock cross country teams earn top-20 national rankings
SLIPPERY ROCK, Pa. - The Rock women's and men's cross country teams both attained top-20 national rankings this week from the U.S. Track & Field and Cross County Coaches Association.
The women's team is ranked 11th this week, four spots higher than its No. 15 position one week ago. The ascension comes in the wake of SRU's runner-up finish in last Saturday's Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference Championships in Lock Haven.
The men's team, unranked a week ago, jumped into the No. 18 spot this week on the strength of a runner-up finish in last Saturday's PSAC meet.
This week's women's national ranking is the highest attained by the Green and White this season. the previous best was No. 14, a position SRU earned in both the Oct. 8 and Oct. 15 polls. The Rock was ranked 15th in each of the last two weekly polls.
This week's national rankings matches the men's team's preseason national ranking and marks the first time since that preseason poll that SRU was ranked among the nation's top 25 teams.
Both the women's and men's teams are ranked second in the latest USTFCCCA Atlantic Regional poll.
The Rock will look to live up to its rankings Saturday when it hosts the NCAA Division II Atlantic Regional meet at Cooper's Lake Campground south of Slippery Rock. The men's race starts at 11 a.m., followed by the women's race at approximately 12:15 p.m.
The cross country teams are two of four Rock squads that were ranked second in their respective regional polls released this week.
The men's soccer team is second behind Millersville in the NCAA Division II Atlantic Regional poll and the women's tennis team is ranked second in the region by the Intercollegiate Tennis Association. The Rock women's tennis team is ranked behind only California University of Pennsylvania in the ITA regional poll. SRU is ranked 27th in the ITA Division II national poll.
The women's volleyball team is ranked fifth in the latest NCAA Division II Atlantic Region poll, while the women's soccer team is ranked sixth in this week's NCAA Division II Atlantic Regional poll.
In individual rankings, senior Kayla Blackburn of Alum Bank is ranked fourth in the region by the ITA, junior Laura Handy, of Pittsburgh, 10th and sophomore Samantha Blackburn, of Alum Bank, is 13th in singles competition.
Kayla Blackburn and Handy are ranked third in the region as a doubles team, while Samantha Blackburn and junior Jessica Hilborn of Pickerington, Ohio, are ranked seventh.
Slippery Rock University is Pennsylvania's premier public residential university. Slippery Rock University provides students with a comprehensive learning experience that intentionally combines academic instruction with enhanced educational and learning opportunities that make a positive difference in their lives.