NEW ORLEANS, LA - After a weekend where the Lees-McRae College women's cross country team finished 2nd out of 24 teams the United States Track and Field and Cross Country Coaches Association named the Bobcats as the No. 1 team in the Southeast Region for this week.
"It is a tribute to the returnees for their help in recruiting, it is an honor for those freshmen who have come in and run fast, and it is a privilege for our school, campus and community to reach this recognition level," said Coach Craig McPhail.
"It has been a while since we have been on top of the regional rankings and the hard work and dedication have truly paid off for the young women who represent our team," McPhail said.
It was four years ago when the Bobcats were ranked No. 1 in the Southeast and that team qualified for the Division II National Championships held in Raleigh, NC.
Lees-McRae has had a strong tradition of women's cross country as they have won the Carolinas-Virginia Athletic Conference Championship in six of McPhail's eight seasons.
Led by a group of talented freshmen the Bobcats have been able to run well as a pack, but also not had to worry about injuries and depth as they have their most talented team in a while.
"We have a great mix of youth and leadership, thus making the trips, practices and day-to-day life lessons very fun ones," McPhail said.
"Obviously we want to work hard to keep this ranking and will be much more proud of it come November when it really matters, but for now, we are excited."
Next up for the Bobcats will be the Lenoir-Rhyne Invite held Friday, September 22, 2006 at Southside Park in Newton, NC at 5:15 p.m.