Sept. 13, 2013
The University of Alabama men's and women's cross country teams compete in the Black & Gold Invitational at the University of Iowa in Iowa City on Friday. Action at the Ashton Cross Country Course begins at 6 p.m. (CT) with the women's 4K. The men's 6K event will follow at 6:45 p.m. "It will be good to get back out again and compete," Alabama distance coach Adam Tribble said. "This is our first real meet - it's a small meet, with three teams competing on the men's side and four on the women's side. But we are excited to get out there and compete against a talented, good field."
In the Rankings
Both the men's and women's cross country teams are ranked in the preseason (August 25) USTFCCCA Regional rankings. The women's team is ranked sixth in the South Region, while the men are ranked 13th. Nationally, he Alabama men's team received seven votes in the preseason USTFCCCA national poll. The first in-season rankings will be release next Monday, September 16.
2013 Black & Gold Invite
In addition to host Iowa, the 2013 Black & Gold Invite features teams from Alabama, Baylor (women), and Iowa State. The Iowa State women's team is the only squad in the meet that is nationally ranked, currently 26th in the national top 30.
Tide Women Shine in Debut
Alabama opened the 2013 season on Aug. 31 by winning the women's race and finishing second in the men's race in a dual meet with Samford at Hoover, Ala. The Crimson Tide women's team had an impressive season opener, taking the first seven places in the race of slightly more than two miles distance while dominating. Alabama finished perfect with 15 team points to Samford's 50. The Tide men's team lost a close verdict to the Bulldogs in the 5-kilometer race, 29-30.
Panagiotou & Greenleaf Lead the Tide
The Tide was led in the season opener by Meropi Panagiotou's victory in a time of 11 minutes, 22.76 seconds, just slightly ahead of the Tide's Katelyn Greenleaf (11:22.88). Freshman Hilary Stafford had an impressive debut for Alabama to take third place (11:23.45) with Rebecca Stover fourth (11:27.81) and Abigail Tankersley fifth (11:28.62).
Sticking to the Plan
The Tide men's team lost a close verdict to Samford in the 5-kilometer race despite executing their race plan by staying tightly pack to maximize scoring. The Tide men stayed together rather than racing out the last 200 meters. "Keeping a controlled effort and working as a pack was more important today than racing out the last couple of hundred meters just to win," said Tide distance coach Adam Tribble. "The efforts overall were good. It's another good step in the right direction." Justin Ahalt was Alabama's first finisher, taking fourth in 16:31.59. Alabama runners took fourth through 10th.
The Crimson Tide will travel to Bethlehem, Pa., to compete in the Paul Short Invitational on Saturday, October 5.
Following the Tide
For results and breaking news on the team, be sure to follow the Crimson Tide's feed on Twitter, @AlabamaTrack.