Belmont Rules the Poll in Week Two
Belmont looks to secure another A-Sun Championship this year.
Belmont looks to secure another A-Sun Championship this year.

Thursday, September 04, 2008

MACON, Ga. - Building on its preseason accolades, Belmont's men's and women's cross country teams remained the top squads in the Atlantic Sun Conference, the conference office announced on Thursday. The Bruins open their season, hosting the Belmont Opener on September 5.

Since joining the Atlantic Sun in 2001 both the Belmont men and women have won six of seven cross country titles. Kipkosgei Magut, Belmont’s senior and two-time defending champion in the men’s race, will lead the men as they attempt to win their seventh straight league title. Joining Magut among Belmont returning runners include Ben McGlothlin, Will Peters and 2007 Freshman of the Year Hillary Cheruiyot.

UNF and Lipscomb switched places in the men's poll. The Ospreys take over the fifth place and the Bisons move to sixth. The UNF men put together a strong performance at the Covered Bridge Open, finishing fifth, with the team’s top six runners placing in the top 35 of the 114 runner field. Lipscomb worked the course last Saturday at the Mid-America Opener finishing third.

In the women's side, the Dolphins jumped ahead of the Ospreys to third after finishing first at the Jacksonville Short Course Duals last Friday. Mercer and ETSU tied again this week, but this time in the eighth slot. Mercer finished third in last Friday’s Gamecock Invitational in Columbia, S.C. ETSU opens their season on Friday at the Virginia Tech Invitational.

The biggest mover from the preseason poll was the USC Upstate women's team. Picked 10th in the preseason, the Spartans have moved up to seventh on the strength of a sixth place finish at the Covered Bridge Open on Friday. Freshman newcomers Caroline Chelulei and Jemeli Sang highlighted the Spartan women's team with respective 21st and 23rd place finishes. Chelulei finished in 19:52 while Sang followed closely behind with a 19:55 finish.

The Atlantic Sun Conference is an 11-member league committed to Building Winners for Life, with a focus on academic and athletic integrity and a balance between the two for the student-athlete, and maintaining a high level of sportsmanship. Headquartered in Macon, Ga., the A-Sun encompasses six of the top eight media markets in the Southeast. The A-Sun consists of some of the most dynamic private and public institutions in the region: Belmont University, Campbell University, East Tennessee State University, Florida Gulf Coast University, Jacksonville University, Kennesaw State University, Lipscomb University, Mercer University, University of North Florida, University of South Carolina Upstate and Stetson University.

2008 Men's Cross Country A-Sun Coaches Poll
 Rank
Previous Rank
 School  Points
1
1
Belmont 117
2
2
ETSU 110
3
3
Kennesaw State
94
4
4
Cambell
78
5
6
UNF
75
6
 5  Lipscomb  74
 7  T7 Mercer
54
 8 T7
FGCU
 48
 9 9
 USC Upstate
 33
 10 10  Stetson  23
 11 11
 Jacksonville  20


2008 Women's Cross Country A-Sun Coaches Poll
 Rank
Previous Rank
 School  Points
1
1
Belmont 118
2
2
Kennesaw State
111
3
4
Jacksonville
87
4
3
UNF
80
5
5
Lipscomb
79
6
 6 Campbell 67
 7 10
USC Upstate
57
 T8 T7
ETSU
38
T8 T7
Mercer 38
 10 9  FGCU 37
 11 11
Stetson 15