@AU_TrackXC Breaks Into USTFCCCA Mid-Atlantic Regional Poll

Ben Doiron at the Paul Short Run

WASHINGTON – The American University cross country capped off an exciting weekend of performances with a pair of top-15 rankings in the NCAA Mid-Atlantic Region, as released by the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA) on Monday.

The men landed at No. 11 in the region after clinching key wins over Lehigh, Rutgers, La Salle, UMBC, Monmouth and Saint Francis (Pa.) during Friday's Paul Short Run in Bethlehem, Pa. The Eagles were led by personal record (PR) performances from all five scorers, starting with junior Ben Doiron who paced the team with a 50th-place overall finish in 24:27 on the 8,000-meter course.

Senior Alaeldin Tirba was second for the Eagles in 61st overall (24:30), followed by junior Matthew Rainey in 70th (24:37), senior Liam Purdy in 131st (25:01) and senior Sam Doud in 232nd (25:35)

This is the highest regional ranking for the men's team since 2014, when they peaked at No. 10 during the fifth week of the season.

The AU women also find themselves within the top 15 in the region after a slew of PR performances over the weekend. The Eagles outpaced fellow Mid-Atlantic foes La Salle, Rutgers, Delaware and Towson on Friday to land at No. 13 in the current rankings.

Junior Adriana Hooks led the way for the Eagles for the third consecutive meet this season, the eighth since the start of the 2016 slate, with a new PR of 21:15 over 6,000-meters for 99th in the field.

Like the men, all five scorers for the women's team earned new PR's in the process, starting with freshmen Nadia Stratton and Shelbi Wuss who each cut off over a minute from their 6k debuts with final times of 21:46 and 21:49, respectively. Senior Brianna Belo was fourth across the line for the Eagles in 21:51, followed by sophomore Arianna Lopez in 21:58.

This is the first time the women have appeared in the regional rankings since 2013 when they peaked at No. 11 during the fifth week of the season.

The Eagles will be back on the road in two weeks for the final meet of the regular season at the Princeton Invitational on Oct. 14. The teams will then head into the postseason with the Patriot League Championships on Oct. 28 and the NCAA Mid-Atlantic Regional Championships on Nov. 10.

For the latest on AU Cross Country, stay tuned to AUEagles.com and follow the team on Twitter @AU_TrackXC.