Columbus State Cross Country Programs in USTFCCCA Preseason Top 25
New Orleans, LA – The U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA) announced their preseason cross country national poll this afternoon. Both Columbus State University cross country programs were selected in the top 25 after completing fantastic seasons in 2009.
The men were chosen in the 21st spot after finishing last year 19th at the NCAA Championship. They return an upperclassman heavy roster led by Meshack Koyiak and Nicholas Kering. Koyiak won last year's conference individual championship, finished second at the Southeastern Regional, and ninth at nationals. Kering was right behind him placing third at the Peach Belt Conference Championship and fourth at the Southeastern Regional. David Marley and John Neil return to the squad, both earning All-Peach Belt honors a year ago.
The women were pegged at 23rd in the poll, a year after winning their first-ever Southeastern Regional title. The Lady Cougars claimed stake to the top spot in the 2010 Southeastern and Peach Belt Conference preseason polls the past two weeks. Four runners return for the women's team as well, led by Naomi Tanui and Brittney Skiles. Tanui won the 2009 women's PBC individual championship and placed third at the 2009 Southeastern Regional. Skiles voted the 2009 PBC woman runner of the year last season and finished second in the conference and fourth at the Southeastern Regional.
Columbus State is the only Peach Belt Conference member to be ranked in the poll. The 2010 Cross Country season gets underway for the Cougars on September 11, when they compete in the Georgia Southwestern Remembrance Run at Georgia Southwestern University.