Sept. 27, 2011
Nashville, Tenn. -
The Vanderbilt women’s cross country team broke into the USTFCCCA national poll for the first time this season—and in school history—after placing seventh in the Roy Griak Invitational in Minneapolis, Minn. this past weekend.
Vanderbilt outpaced last week’s No. 18 Penn State, No. 23 BYU, and No. 21 NC State. Penn State dropped ten places to No. 28, BYU fell to 29th, just above Vanderbilt in the 30-spot, and NC State dropped out of the rankings altogether, though they received nine votes.
Alexa Rogers, Louise Hannallah, Jordan White, and freshman Grace Orders were all key components in the race, finishing first through fourth in order for the Commodores. It was Rogers’ first time leading the team in a race as she moved up through the field to finish ninth overall out of the 272 runners in the 6K event.
"We’re slowly creeping up into that national level which is where we’ve been trying to build for the last four or five years," said head coach Steve Keith. "The women had a really solid race last week in Minnesota and that put us in the national picture where we want to be. First time (in the polls) is great, and we should celebrate this. The ladies want to win the SEC and they want to be at a higher number at the national championships, so this is one step along the way."