Bruins Ranked No. 24 In Preseason Poll

Sept. 3, 2003

LOS ANGELES - Eric Peterson's UCLA women's cross country squad enters the 2003 campaign preseason ranked No. 24 in the U. S., according to the first poll released Wednesday by the Women's Cross Country Coaches Association.

In 2002, the Bruin women qualified as a team to the NCAA Championships (tied for 25th) for the second consecutive season and have qualified for the nationals four of the last five years. The Bruins return every major runner from last season, led by senior All-American Lena Nilsson and junior Alejandra Barrientos, who in 2002 earned second-team All-Pac-10 honors.

In the preseason poll released on Wednesday, the Bruins were the third-highest ranked team in the Pac-10. Stanford, the defending conference champion, was No. 2, followed by No. 19 Arizona State and No. 24 UCLA. Washington was one of 11 teams receiving votes for the Top 30.

'Our commitment is continued growth and improvement,' said Peterson, entering his 10th season as head coach of the Bruin women's team. 'We've shown over the past five years that our program is among the nation's elite. With the development and maturity of our roster, we expect this level of success to continue.'

The Bruin women and men's teams will train this week at Mammoth Lakes. The season's first competition is Saturday, Sept. 13, traveling to San Diego's Balboa Park for the Aztec Invitational.

FinishLynx/NCAA DIVISION I WOMEN'S CROSS COUNTRY NATIONAL POLL
(Conducted by the Women's Cross Country Coaches Association)

2003 Preseason Poll (Sept. 2)

Rk. School Points
1. Brigham Young (13) 390
2. Stanford 371
3. Notre Dame 358
4. Colorado 351
5. Villanova 330
6. Providence 329
7. Wake Forest 303
8. Georgetown 296
9. Columbia 271
10. Northern Arizona 264
11. North Carolina 255
12. Michigan 253
13. Michigan State 227
14. North Carolina State 216
15. Arkansas 212
16. Duke 175
17. Missouri 168
18. Indiana 166
19. Arizona State 151
20. Virginia 128
21. Penn State 122
22. Boston College 118
23. Wisconsin 103
24. UCLA 85
25. William & Mary 79
26. Colorado State 77
27. Marquette 60
28. Texas A&M 42
29. Southwest Missouri State 24
30. West Virginia 21

Other Teams Also Receiving Votes: Cornell 18, Washington 17, Auburn 15, Baylor 12, Toledo 11, Minnesota 10, Dartmouth 5, Weber State 5, Yale 4, Kentucky 2, Florida State 1.

Voting panel consists of the nine elected regional representatives and four at large members of the Women's Intercollegiate Cross Country Coaches Association. Compiled by Jesse Rosen of 1201 Yale Place, #1001, Minneapolis, MN.For more information, please e-mail jjrosen@aol.com or FAX 414/747-2489
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The first regular season poll will be released on September 22nd
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