St. Louis, Mo. Aug. 30, 2016 – As the Washington University in St. Louis men's and women's cross country teams are getting set to start the 2016 season, the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA) released the NCAA Division III Preseason Polls with the women ranking fourth and the men 34th overall.
North Central leads the men's poll while Williams is the preseason favorite on the women's side. The University Athletic Association (UAA) was well represented in the poll. Five UAA teams ranked in the top 35 on both the men's and women's side. The WashU women's fourth position was the highest spot on the poll for any UAA roster. Carnegie Mellon was 11th overall for the top position amongst UAA men's programs to make the list.
The women return five of their seven runners from last year's team to finish fifth at the NCAA Championships. Junior Aly Wayne returns with the top time from the championships last season with a time of 21:54.1. Also returning are sophomore Ellie Degen and juniors Alison Lindsay and Anna Maurer.
Senior Ryan Becker returns on the men's side after pacing the Bears to a 16th place finish. Personally he finished 21st in the 8K NCAA Championship course in Winneconne, Wisc. with a time of 24:47.6. He is also joined by senior Ben Rosenkranz, sophomore Peter Johnsrud and junior David O'Gara.
WashU begins the year at home during the Gabby Reuveni Early Bird meet this Friday at 6 p.m. in Forest Park. Be sure to stay up to date on all your Bears news and awards by following @WASHUBears on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.