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Cross Country

Point Park women’s cross country predicted 2nd in KIAC Preseason Poll

Aug. 20, 2015 at 12:00 p.m. ET

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FLORENCE, Ky. – Point Park University women’s cross country was predicted second of 11 schools in the 2015 KIAC Women’s Cross Country Preseason Coaches’ Poll announced by the conference office.

The Pioneers are one point behind defending KIAC champion and preseason favorite Asbury (Ky.) in the voting conducted by the 11 KIAC cross country head coaches.

Point Park finished second in the KIAC last year and returns three NAIA national qualifying individuals Kesley Wilkins (Central Valley HS), Katie Guarnaccia (North Allegheny HS) and Ashley Czerniewski-Hagan (Baldwin HS).

Point Park opens the 2015 season Sept. 5 at the Duquesne Duals in Schenley Park and is currently conducting preseason training on campus.

Asbury (Ky.) was tabbed this year's favorite after receiving six of the 11 first-place votes and came up with 92 of a possible 100 points in the poll. The Eagles edged out Point Park, which was just one point behind with 91 points and four first-place votes.

The first-place votes were spread across three teams with Rio Grande receiving the final one on its way to third place and 85 points in the poll.

The preseason poll was voted on by the 11 KIAC women's cross country head coaches. Coaches were not permitted to vote for their own teams.

The top three in this year's preseason predictions remain in the same order from the 2014 KIAC Women's Cross Country Meet results. Asbury's team that finished first last season had just one senior in its top five performers. Point Park was second last year and returns three NAIA national qualifying individuals.

After Rio Grande in third place in the preseason poll, IU East came in fourth with 66 points. The Red Wolves finished fifth in the KIAC last year. Brescia (Ky.) University placed fifth in the poll with 62 points after placing fourth in the conference a year ago.

IU Kokomo (47 points) came in sixth, and Carlow and KIAC newcomer West Virginia Tech were tied for seventh with 44 points each. The final three teams were predicted as Cincinnati Christian (31 points), newcomer Ohio Christian (29) and Alice Lloyd (Ky.) (14).

The KIAC women's cross country season opens August 28. The 2015 KIAC Cross Country Championship Meet is Nov. 7 at Rio Grande. The conference championship team will receive an automatic bid to the NAIA Cross Country National Championship Nov. 21 at Charlotte, N.C., along with any qualifying individuals. Follow KIAC cross country on KIACsports.com and on Twitter @KIACSports.

2015 KIAC WOMEN'S CROSS COUNTRY PRESEASON COACHES' POLL (Aug. 14)

(First-Place Votes in Parenthesis)

School

Points

1. Asbury (Ky.) (6)

92

2. Point Park (Pa.) (4)

91

3. Rio Grande (1)

85

4. IU East

66

5. Brescia (Ky.)

62

6. IU Kokomo

47

T7. Carlow (Pa.)

44

T7. West Virginia Tech

44

9. Cincinnati Christian

31

10. Ohio Christian

29

11. Alice Lloyd (Ky.)

14