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Cross Country Tabbed Fourth in Preseason Poll

Meredith cross country tabbed fourth in USA South preseason poll.
Meredith cross country tabbed fourth in USA South preseason poll.

FAYETTEVILLE, N.C. -- Meredith College was tabbed fourth in the recently released USA South Women's Cross Country Preseason Coaches Poll. Under the third-year direction of Head Coach Leslie Payne, the Avenging Angels returned this fall with top runners Macy Brinson, Caroline Diorio, and Megan Evans leading the team and will attempt to shake up league expectations. Meredith placed second in last year's championship meet behind this year's top pick and defending champion Piedmont Lions.

Newcomer Berea College of Kentucky earned the most first-place votes for a second-place finish in the poll, and Covenant landed third in front of the Angels. The Methodist Monarchs received one first-place vote and finished fifth in the poll.

The USA South welcomes several new additions to women's cross country this fall. Huntingdon and Wesleyan added the sport to begin collegiate competition this season, while Berea, Brevard College, and Pfeiffer University have established programs but are beginning their first season as USA South member institutions. Brevard and Pfeiffer are transitioning from NCAA Division II and will be ineligible for championships and athletic accolades this season. But student-athletes from each of the three new members will be invited to participate in the Conference Championship event and will be eligible for All-Academic honors at the end of the year.

The Avenging Angels open the 2017 season Saturday at Elon for a 4,000 meter race. The USA South Cross Country Championship will be held at TFS Farms in Tallulah Falls, Georgia, hosted by Piedmont on Saturday, October 29. The women's 6,000-meter race is scheduled to begin at 11:00 a.m., while the men's 8,000-meter race is scheduled to begin at Noon.


2017 USA South Women's Cross Country Coaches Preseason Poll

Rank Institution (1st Place Votes) Pts.
1. Piedmont (5) 211
2. Berea (9) 187
3. Covenant 183
4. Meredith 179
5. Methodist (1) 177
6. Maryville 146
7. Agnes Scott 139
8. Mary Baldwin 116
9. Salem 111
10. Averett 109
11. LaGrange 86
12. Huntingdon (1) 82
13. N.C. Wesleyan 57
14. Ferrum 55 
15. Wesleyan 44 
16. William Peace 38
--- *Brevard -
--- *Pfeiffer -
*Ineligible for USA South Championship (Div. III Reclassifying Member)