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Pioneer women picked seventh, men ninth in SAC cross country poll

Pioneer women picked seventh, men ninth in SAC cross country poll

ROCK HILL, S.C. --- The South Atlantic Conference unveiled its men's and women's cross country preseason polls on Wednesday, following voting by the conference's 11 head coaches. The Pioneer women were picked to finish seventh overall while the men were selected ninth in the voting.

Tusculum's women were seventh in the 2017 SAC Championship for their best finish since 2008. Alissa Furches returns for the Pioneers after earning honorable mention All-SAC status with her 20th-place finish. She is one of five runners from last year's championship meet back in action for the Pioneers this season.

Queens is picked to win the league for a third straight season, capturing 10 of the 11 first-place votes. Anderson, Wingate and Catawba are next in the poll followed by a tied for fifth between Lincoln Memorial and Lenoir-Rhyne. After Tusculum in seventh, the rest of the survey consists of Carson-Newman, Mars Hill, Coker and Newberry.

The men's poll nearly mirrors last year's SAC Championship result, of which four of the Pioneers' competitors are back in the lineup this season including top finishers Will Cronin (29th) and Jackson Beason (33rd).

Queens was a near-unanimous first-place selection after winning its second conference title in three years and finishing sixth at the NCAA Division II Championship. Wingate is picked second, followed by Anderson, Lincoln Memorial and Lenoir-Rhyne in the top five. Mars Hill is picked sixth, with Catawba, Carson-Newman, Tusculum, Coker and Newberry rounding out the poll.

The Pioneers will open their schedule on Friday, Sept. 7 in the Zaxby's Open at the Holston Home course in Greeneville. The SAC Championship meet is Saturday, Nov. 3 in Spartanburg, South Carolina.

2018 SAC WOMEN'S CROSS COUNTRY PRESEASON POLL
Rk School (1st), Pts
1. Queens (10), 110
2. Anderson (1), 98
3. Wingate, 94
4. Catawba, 75
T5. Lincoln Memorial, 71
T5. Lenoir-Rhyne, 71
7. TUSCULUM, 54
8. Carson-Newman, 49
9. Mars Hill, 33
10. Coker, 29
11. Newberry, 22

2018 SAC MEN'S CROSS COUNTRY PRESEASON POLL
Rk School (1st) Pts
1. Queens (10), 110
2. Wingate (1), 98
3. Anderson, 91
4. Lincoln Memorial, 75
5. Lenoir-Rhyne, 74
6. Mars Hill, 62
7. Catawba, 57
8. Carson-Newman, 50
9. TUSCULUM, 41
10. Coker, 28
11. Newberry, 20

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