Cross Country Prepared for NCAA Southeast Regional
Nov. 8, 2012
RALEIGH, N.C. - The NC State men's and women's cross country teams will make the short trip south to Charlotte for the 2012 NCAA Southeast Regional this Friday, Nov. 9 at McAlpine Creek Park. The women's 6K race will begin at noon, followed by the men's 10K at 1:15 p.m.
The common goal for all men's and women's teams competing in the event is to qualify for the 2012 NCAA Division I Cross Country Championships, which will be held Saturday, Nov. 17 at E.P. Tom Sawyer State Park in Louisville, Ky.
"Obviously, if you finish in the top two, it takes the criteria element out, and that's the goal," said men's head coach Rollie Geiger. "It's always best to run for the win. That's the goal."
The top two teams at each of Friday's nine regional meets around the country will automatically advance to the national meet. The national field will then be filled with 13 at-large selections, comprising a total of 31 men's and 31 women's teams
All runners who place in the top 25 will earn all-region recognition and become eligible for advancement to Louisville. The national meet features 38 individual competitors not on advancing teams. The top four finishers from each regional meet who are not part of a national-qualifying squad will punch their ticket to Louisville. Two at-large individuals will be added to round out the national field, afterward.
"I think if we do a little better at the 4-5-6-7 positions, then we'll be fine," Geiger said. "Every region in the country is different. I think everyone on the team understands its about making a trip to nationals."
Many of the Wolfpack runners on both the men's and women's sides will be running in familiar territory on Friday, as several members of each squad have run on the same course before. While it might be the first time some of the members on the youthful women's team will run a race at this level, according to women's head coach Laurie Henes.
"This course is the Foot Locker Regional high school course for the southeast, so Sammy [George], Joanna [Thompson], and Kaitlyn [Kramer] have run on this course many times," said Henes. "Even if this is their first race at this level, they'll be comfortable on this course. It's a 6K, there's some differences, but they're very familiar with this course and have a great comfort factor with running well on this course. Sometimes in cross country, that can be a factor."