Aug. 26, 2013
• USTFCCCA Release | USTFCCCA Rankings
MADISON, Wis. -- The Wisconsin men's and women's cross country teams earned a boost of confidence heading into next week's season opening meet. The U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA) released its preseason regional rankings Monday and had the Badgers in the top-10 for both sports.
The Wisconsin men's team takes its usual spot at the top of the Great Lakes Regional rankings, checking in at No. 1. The Badgers have won 11 straight regional titles and will once again start the 2013 as the region's favorite.
The UW men's team is followed in the rankings by fellow Big Ten schools Indiana (2), Michigan (4), Michigan State (5), Purdue (6) and Ohio State (8). Notre Dame (3), Butler (7), Miami (9) and Indiana State (10) round out the top-10.
The Badgers return four of its top seven finishers from last year's NCAA runner-up squad, including seniors Rob Finnerty and Alex Brill, along with juniors Alex Hatz and Michael Van Voorhis. In addition, redshirt freshman Malachy Schrobilgen gained valuable experience this past year representing the United States at the 2013 IAAF World Junior Cross Country Championships after finishing runner-up at the USA Junior Cross Country Championships.
The Wisconsin women checked in at sixth in the USTFCCCA regional preseason poll. The Badgers finished eighth at the 2012 meet at the Zimmer Championship Course, and return five of their seven runners from last year's Great Lakes Regional, including all-region harrier Gabrielle Anzalone.
The Badgers are one of five Big Ten teams in the top-10 in the Great Lakes Region, as Michigan State takes the top spot, while defending champion Michigan (2), Ohio State (7) and Indiana (8) join Wisconsin in the top-10. Notre Dame (3), Butler (4), Toledo (5), Miami (9) and Ohio (10) wrap up the top-10.
The USTFCCCA national poll will be released on Tuesday.
Both squads will see their first action of the year on Friday, Sept. 6 as they host the Badger Opener at the Zimmer Championship Cross Country Course. The meet is free to the public and slated to start at 5 p.m.