Aggie Men Picked As WAC Pre-Championship Favorites, USU Women Third
Oct. 24, 2011
LOGAN, Utah - Utah State's men's cross country team was picked to win its sixth Western Athletic Conference championship in the last seven years, while the Aggie women were tabbed third as the WAC announced its men's and women's cross country pre-championship coaches' polls on Monday, as voted on by the league's five men's and eight women's head coaches.
The poll is released in advance of the 2011 WAC Cross Country Championships on Saturday, Oct. 29 at Honolulu, Hawai'i, hosted by the University of Hawai'i.
Utah State received five first-place votes and 25 points while Idaho captured second place with 20 points with one first place vote. New Mexico State claimed the third spot with 18 points, while with 13 points, Fresno State was voted fourth with San Jose State and Louisiana Tech followed in a tie for fifth-place with seven points each.
On the women's side, Utah State was picked to finish third with 38 points including one first place vote. Idaho, the 2010 WAC women's champion, was selected first with five first-place votes and 46 overall points. The 2009 champion New Mexico State followed closely in second with two first-place votes and 43 points. Fresno State received 31 points to capture the fourth spot, while Nevada was ranked fifth with 27 points. Hawai`i was selected sixth with 17 points, followed by San Jose State in seventh with 15 points. Louisiana Tech was selected eighth with seven points.
The Aggie men won five-straight WAC Cross Country Championships from 2005-2009 before finishing third in 2010. USU's women won titles in 2006 and 2008 while finishing in second-place the last two years.
In its last action, the USU men were fourth while the Aggie women were 15th at the University of Arkansas hosted Chile Pepper Festival on Oct. 15 at Fayetteville, Ark. Senior captain Brian McKenna led the Utah State men as he finished 15th out of 288 runners with a time of 30:09.5 while sophomore Kyle McKenna and senior Daniel Howell finished 35th (30:37.4) and 40th (30:47.0), respectively.
The USU women were led by sophomore Hannah Williams, clocking in at 22:16.1 in 81st-place. Following Williams was junior Kaylee Campbell's finish at 22:21.3 in 85th-place.
Following the WAC Championship in Honolulu, those who qualify will compete in the 2011 NCAA Mountain Region Championships in Orem, Utah on Nov. 12. The top 15 of both the men and women will then move on to the NCAA Championships on Nov. 21 in Terre Haute, Ind.
Fans can follow Utah State Athletics, including Aggie track & field and cross country, at http://twitter.com/USUAthletics or on Facebook at Utah State University Athletics.
2011 Pre-Championship Men's Cross Country Coaches Poll Rank Teams (1st Place Votes) Points 1. UTAH STATE (5) 25 2. Idaho (1) 20 3. New Mexico State 18 4. Fresno State 13 T-5. San Jose State 7 T-5. Louisiana Tech 7