FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. — On Tuesday, the United States Track & Field/Cross Country Coaches Association announced its 2014 NCAA Division I Week Three Poll and the Arkansas women’s cross country team moved up one slot to claim the poll’s seventh spot.
The Razorbacks received 278 points after an idle week, making them the No. 7-ranked team in the country. Arkansas’ No. 7 ranking tied its highest ranking of the season, as they were selected as the No. 7 team in the USTFCCCA Preseason Poll. Fellow Southeastern Conference member, Vanderbilt, was the only other SEC school represented in the USTFCCCA Top 30, as they fell five spots from last week’s ranking to No. 27.
Michigan remained as the top team in the USTFCCCA Top 30 poll by gathering eight first place votes. The Wolverines in-state foe, Michigan State, climbed one spot in this week’s poll to give the Big Ten Conference the two top spots. Oregon fell one spot to No. 3, but still picked up a first place vote. Fellow Pac-12 member, Stanford, picked up 317 points to earn the No. 4 slot and Georgetown, out of the Mid-Atlantic Conference, rounded out the top five with 312 points.
Tuesday’s No. 7 ranking in the USTFCCCA Top 30 poll is the second time this week that Arkansas has earned a high ranking from the association. On Monday, the Razorbacks were voted as the No. 1-ranked team in the South Central Region for the 18th consecutive week in the USTFCCCA Regional Poll.
Two weekends ago, the Razorbacks finished with a rotation score of 24 to win the Missouri Southern Stampede, as its top five runners all finished inside the top 10. Each runner that Arkansas ran that day set a new personal-best time in the 5K.
Redshirt junior Dominique Scott, the reigning USTFCCCA National Runner of the Week and SEC Runner of the Week, turned in a career-best 5K time of 16:32.78 to win her second consecutive meet and recorded the best time in Missouri Southern Stampede meet history. Senior Shannon Klenke finished 50.26 seconds behind Scott, as her time of 16:58.52 was good enough for a second-place finish. The time is a new personal-best for Klenke, surpassing her previous best 5K time of 17:10.30 set at last year’s Chile Pepper Festival.
Arkansas rounded out its scoring rotation with a trio of runners placing sixth, seventh and eighth. Redshirt junior Diane Robison (17:09.10), sophomore Regan Ward (17:12.22) redshirt sophomore Valerie Reina (17:15.12) all set new personal record 5K times.
The Razorbacks return to action on Saturday, when they will run in front of their home fans for the first time during the 2014 season, as they will run in the 2014 Chile Pepper Festival at Agri Park. Race time is slated for roughly 10:20 a.m.
For more information on Arkansas women’s cross country, follow @RazorbackTF on Twitter.