ETSU men's cross country picked third in the Atlantic Sun preseason poll
Deren
Deren

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

MACON, Ga. (Aug. 21, 2007) - With two and a half weeks remaining before the ETSU cross country season gets underway the Atlantic Sun conference released its 2007 preseason coaches poll, and Dave Walker's men's team is picked to finish third this season among conference foes.

 

The Bucs received 123 total votes, which is only three shy from second-place Kennesaw State and 21 short of 2006 conference champion Belmont. The Bruins received all 12 of the first-place votes and return four of their leading scorers from last season's A-Sun Championship squad. Rounding out the top-five included Gardner-Webb (102 points) and North Florida (96 points).

 

ETSU will be one of the top teams looking to dethrone Belmont's five-year championship run; as the Bucs joined Kennesaw State as the only two teams to receive second-place votes. The Bucs finished third at the conference championship last year, but return their top five runners, including All-Atlantic Sun Runner Michael Deren (Blasdell, N.Y.) and Atlantic Sun All-Freshmen Team selection J Penny (Telford, Tenn.). Deren led ETSU across the finish line in every meet last season, while Penny battled through injury and placed in the top-30 at the conference meet.

 

Senior Jordan Ladd (Lyn, Ontario), junior red-shirt Jeff Crane (Taylors, S.C.), and sophomore Kenneth Rotich (Sotik, Kenya) round out the returnees from last season, while local newcomer Josh Jaynes (Elizabethton, Tenn.) adds much needed depth to the squad. ETSU will search for its first team championship since the 1996 season as its top five runners and a couple new additions look to bounce back after the third-place mark in 2006.

 

Just like on the men's side, Belmont was selected to win the conference on the women's side. The Bruins received 11 of the 12 first-place selections, totaling 143 votes. North Florida was the lone conference member to receive another first-place vote after finishing 14 points behind Belmont at the 2006 conference championship.

 

For the second consecutive season the ETSU women's team will be guided by a youth movement as head coach Michelle Byrne's squad features one senior, two sophomores and three freshmen. The Bucs' top returning runner, Vicki Currie (Dumfries, Scotland), returns for her second year and will lead the team in 2007. Currie led the Bucs across the line in four of her five meets in 2006, and also finished in the top-30 at the A-Sun Championship.

 

Joining the Scotland sensation, includes sophomore Christin Zink (Herndon, Va.), and freshmen twin sisters Terra and Tesha Haggard (Morristown, Tenn.).

 

The Bucs received 48 total votes and were selected to finish ninth by the coaches.

 

The ETSU cross country team is preparing for its season opener, which is slated for Saturday, Sept. 8 at the Virginia Tech Invitational.

 

Below is the full men's and women's cross country poll:

 

2007 Men's Cross Country Preseason Poll

Rank

School (First Place Votes)

Votes

1.

Belmont (12)

144

2.

Kennesaw State

126

3.

ETSU

123

4.

Gardner-Webb

102

5.

UNF

96

6.

Campbell

90

7.

Lipscomb

64

8.

Mercer

56

9.

Florida Gulf Coast

49

10.

USC Upstate

41

11.

Stetson

29

12.

Jacksonville

16

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

2007 Women's Cross Country Preseason Poll

Rank

School (First Place Votes)

Votes

1.

Belmont (11)

143

2.

UNF (1)

126

3.

Kennesaw State

122

4.

Jacksonville

105

5.

Campbell

98

6.

Lipscomb

79

7.

Gardner-Webb

64

8.

Mercer

49

9.

ETSU

48

10.

USC Upstate

40

11.

Florida Gulf Coast

39

12.

Stetson

23

 

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WSOC Radford Johnson City, Tenn.
Aug 22, 7:00 p.m. ETSU
MSOC ETSU Blacksburg, Va.
Aug 23, 7:00 p.m. Virginia Tech (Exh.)
WSOC ETSU Cookeville, Tenn.
Aug 24, 1:00 p.m. Tennessee Tech
WSOC Appalachian St. Johnson City, Tenn.
Aug 28, 7:00 p.m. ETSU
MSOC ETSU Richmond, Va.
Aug 29, 7:00 p.m. William & Mary
VB ETSU Charlotte, N.C.
Aug 29, 9:00 a.m. Morgan State University
VB ETSU Charlotte, N.C.
Aug 29, 5:00 p.m. California State University, Sacramento
VB ETSU Charlotte, N.C.
Aug 30, 12:00 p.m. UNC Charlotte
WSOC Campbell Johnson City, Tenn.
Aug 31, 1:00 p.m. ETSU
MSOC ETSU Richmond, Va.
Aug 31, 3:30 p.m. VCU
WSOC South Carolina St. Johnson City. Tenn.
Sep 2, 6:00 p.m. ETSU
VB ETSU Fairfax, Va.
Sep 5, 3:00 p.m. The College of William and Mary
VB ETSU Fairfax, Va.
Sep 5, 7:00 p.m. George Mason University
WSOC Alabama A&M Johnson City, Tenn.
Sep 5, 7:00 p.m. ETSU
VB ETSU Fairfax, Va.
Sep 6, 12:00 p.m. University of Maryland
VB ETSU Fairfax, Va.
Sep 6, 4:00 p.m. Lehigh University
MSOC Radford Johnson City, Tenn.
Sep 6, 7:00 p.m. ETSU