Lincoln Women Ranked No. 5, Men No. 13 in Latest Rankings
JEFFERSON CITY -- The Lincoln women's outdoor track & field team remained the No. 5 team in the country while the men's squad moved up to No. 13 in the latest United States Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association's Division II National Poll, released on Tuesday. The USTFCCCA also released its regional rankings, with the Blue Tiger women remaining No. 1 in the South Central Region.
The Lincoln women earned 145.22 points to claim the No. 5 ranking. The Blue Tigers closed the gap on MIAA rival Central Missouri (No. 4 in this week's poll), finishing just over four points shy of the Jennies' total of 149.37. Three MIAA programs received mention in this week's USTFCCCA poll, tying for the second-most among all the Division II conferences in the country. Pittsburg State was the other league school ranked, checking in at No. 24 with 54.28 points.
Leading the women's poll for the first time ever is Adams State, which claimed the top ranking after receiving 203.68 points. Grand Valley State is ranked second nationally, receiving 192.88 points, while Grand Canyon earned 164.55 points to round out the top three.
In the men's poll, Lincoln moved from No. 15 last week to No. 13 this week, receiving 93.80 points. Four MIAA programs were ranked in the men's poll, the most of any conference, with Pittsburg State receiving the highest ranking at No. 6 (143.75). Central Missouri checked in at No. 9 (105.35) while Missouri Southern was ranked No. 16 (76.38).
Saint Augustine's claimed the top spot in the men's poll, receiving 233.42 points, while Adams State is second at 208.27 points. Both schools have sizable leads over Grand Canyon, which was ranked No. 3 with 168.17 points. Checking in at No. 4 is Abilene Christian (163.10) while Western State rounds out the top five (159.43).
According to the USTFCCA website, the organization compiles its national team rankings by "mathematical formulae based on national descending order lists and data taken from previous seasons. The purpose and methodology of the rankings is to create an index that showcases the teams that have the best potential of achieving the top spots in the national-team race."
The Blue Tigers have another busy week ahead of them, as both the Lincoln men's and women's track & field teams will split time competing in the Drake Relays and the Penn Relays, both of which take place from April 26-28. The Drake Relays will be particularly special for Lincoln this year, as head coach Victor Thomas will be inducted in the organization's coaches hall of fame.