Kansas City, Mo. - In just her second season as the head coach of the Saint Xavier University women's cross country team, Lisa Ebel has the program headed in the right direction. That point was reinforced this week when the NAIA national office released its annual preseason poll and the Cougars received a No. 24 national ranking. Ebel is excited about her team's emergence among the nation's top cross country squads.
"Having a nationally ranked team was one of the personal goals that I established when I took the job in 2006," said Ebel. "Our team is young but we have a lot of runners who got a ton of valuable experience last season as freshmen and they will help mentor the new crop of talented freshmen we have coming in this year. This team has worked really hard to prepare for the new season and it is nice to see all their hard work is being recognized."
Saint Xavier finished the 2006 season in second place at the Chicagoland Collegiate Athletic Conference (CCAC) Cross Country meet behind Olivet Nazarene University (Ill.). The Cougars also finished fourth in the NAIA Region VII meet and sent sophomore Amy Poull (Oak Forest, Ill./Oak Forest) to the NAIA National Championships in Louisville, Ky., as an individual qualifier.Click here to see the entire 2007 NAIA Women's Cross Country Preseason Poll