Athenas And Stags Top Ranked In the West
With competition about to begin, the United States Track & Field/Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA) preseason polls have been released and the CMS cross country teams are ranked first in the West Region for both the men and the women. Nationally, the Athenas are ranked fifth while the Stags are slotted in the 20th position.
The Athenas return as the conference and regional champions as well as the fourth place team at the NCAA Championships. The team returns seven runners who have competed at the national level. Leading the women at this point will be sophomore Sara Mostatabi (Moraga, CA), juniors Laura Sauvage (Seattle, WA) and Allison Barnwell (Seward, AK) and seniors Marnie Hogue (Mercer Island, WA), Aubrey Zimmerling (Lakewood, CO) and Laura Wyatt (La Jolla, CA).
The Stags will be led by a strong group of five senior leaders all of whom have national competition experience. That group includes Rafer Dannenhauer (Shutesbury, MA), the regional runner-up last season, Brian Sutter (Monroe, WA), who placed third in the region in 2010, Quinn Chasan (Mercer Island, WA), Bennett Naden (Middleton, WI) and Russell Page (Albuquerque, NM). Sophomores Alex Mauro (Eugene, OR) and Sam Pitcavage (Beaverton, OR) will provide depth along with one of the deepest and strongest freshman classes in recent years.
CMS is one of only three programs nationally that is ranked first in their region on both the men's and women's sides (SUNY Geneseo and Calvin College are the others). The first competition for CMS will be in Santa Barbara against Westmont College on September 8. The first regular season USTFCCCA poll will be released September 12.