KUTZTOWN, Pa. – The Kutztown University women’s cross country team is looking to build off its momentum of good finishes during the 2017 season. If KU can match its previous result from last weekend’s conference championships, at this weekend’s NCAA Atlantic Regional meet, the Golden Bears can make history and achieve their season goal of qualifying for nationals.
The NCAA Atlantic Regional race is set for Saturday, Nov. 4, at Lock
Haven University. The 6k race will be held at West Branch Cross Country Course at the Stern Athletic Complex, with a 10:30 a.m. start time.
With the success this season, and the best finish at the Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference (PSAC) meet (3rd) since 2008, the goal of qualifying for the NCAA National Championships is well within reach. KU is looking for its first trip back to the NCAA Championships since the 2010 season when it finished 13th overall, a program record.
KU has qualified for nationals seven times in its history.
The top three teams from the Atlantic Region will automatically advance to the NCAA Championships. Additional team allocations (eight) are awarded based on the following: Click here for formula
The top two individuals at each regional meet, who are not part of a qualifying team, will also automatically advance to Nationals, as well as any other runners that finish inside the top-five. The next eight individuals will be selected at-large. There is no limit to the number of at-large individuals that may be selected from the same region. The top individual from each region not receiving an automatic qualifying spot and not on a qualifying team, will be compared head-to-head.
Kutztown was voted third in the latest U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA) Atlantic Region Poll, released last week. KU moved up one spot from the last poll two weeks prior. It is the highest ranking this year for KU.
Edinboro was first, followed by Shippensburg in second. West Chester and California (Pa.) round out the top-five.
Those finishing among the top-25 Saturday in each race will be considered All-Region performers.
Stephanie Bresadola and Alexis Dongvort led Kutztown to a fifth place finish at the Atlantic Regional last year.
Shippensburg won the team title beating Bloomsburg. Seton Hill finished third. KU tied with Lock Haven for fifth-place with 185 total points, but the Golden Bears were awarded fifth due to a tiebreaker.
Lindsay Hoffman, Callaghan, Leah Talley and Kim Larena all ran in the Atlantic Regional in 2016.
The Golden Bears have finished in the top-five overall for four of their five meets this year, including winning both the Salisbury Fall Classic on Sept. 2 and Bulldog Invitational on Oct. 7. They are coming off a third place finish at the PSAC meet two weekends ago on Oct. 21.
Bresadola led the way with an eighth place finish, leading KU for the fifth time this season. The junior was followed by Dongvort, Amanda Ferraro, Sarah Shannon, Lindsay Smyth and Erin Callaghan who all finished in the top-50 overall. Bresadola earned First-Team All-PSAC honors for the second straight year, and Dongvort and Ferraro received Second-Team recognition.
The NCAA National Championships take place on Saturday, Nov. 18, at the Angel Mounds Cross Country Course in Evansville, IN.