2021 NCAA DI Women’s Cross Country National Coaches’ Poll – Week 6
NEW ORLEANS – Buckle up, it’s going to be a fun postseason!
Here is the Week 6 edition of the NCAA Division I Women’s Cross Country National Coaches’ Poll, as released by the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA) on Tuesday. The entire-top 30 changed as a result of Conference Championships Weekend.
NCAA Division I — Women's Cross Country
This Week's National Top Five
Cross Country Polls & Rankings
NC State is back at No. 1 after sitting at No. 2 in Week 5. The Wolfpack, who received five first-place votes, scored 20 points en route to the program’s sixth consecutive ACC title. The 20 points scored by the Wolfpack also tied the lowest point total in championship history. Kelsey Chmiel and Katelyn Tuohy went 1-2 to lead all five runners to top-10 finishes.
New Mexico, who also received five first-place votes, is at No. 2 this week. The Lobos were impressive in claiming their 14th straight Mountain West title with a perfect score of 15. Amelia Mazza-Downie led the Lobos with her individual win, just 0.6 seconds ahead of Emma Heckel.
Colorado received one first-place vote and improved one spot to No. 3 for a season best billing. The Buffaloes captured the program’s fifth Pac-12 Championship with 24 points over now No. 7 Utah. It was an impressive run for the Buffaloes, as they placed four runners in the top-5 led by the 1-2 punch of Abby Nichols and Emily Covert.
BYU will come in at No. 4 in Week 6 following the improvement of Colorado. The Cougars recently won the West Coast Conference title with 21 points. Whittni Orton won the individual title to pace all scoring runners to top-8 finishes.
Minnesota improved one spot to No. 5 and is back in the top-5 for the first time since 2008. The Gophers won a close team battle for the Big Ten title by just six points over runner-up Wisconsin, 72-78. Megan Hasz captured the individual crown in 20:34.5 and held off runner-up Ericka VanderLende of Michigan by 0.8 seconds. Abby Kohut-Jackson and Bethany Hasz also earned top-10 finishes in seventh and ninth, respectively, for the Gophers.
Oklahoma State inched closer to the top-5 after improving one spot to No. 6. The Cowgirls held off former No. 17 (now co-No. 13) Iowa State by one point for the Big 12 title, 35-36. Taylor Roe was the Cowgirls’ top finisher with her third-place finish and led four runners to top-10 finishes.
Arkansas made one of the biggest leaps of the week, moving up seven spots from No. 15 to No. 8. The Razorbacks captured their ninth-straight SEC title with 68 points over former No. 11 (now No. 15) Ole Miss and former No. 5 (now No. 11) Alabama, who finished in second and third, respectively. Krissy Gear placed third to lead the Razorbacks, while Isabel Van Camp also earned a top-10 finish in tenth.
Florida State and North Carolina are co-No. 9 this week after strong performances at the ACC Championships that saw them finish third and second, respectively. The Seminoles improved one spot from No. 10 and had runners finish 11-13-22-26-30. The Tar Heels are back in the top-10 for the first time since 2004 following a four spot jump. Brynn Brown (sixth) and Paige Hofstaf (tenth) paced the Tar Heels to runner-up honors.
Speaking of Wisconsin and that thrilling Big Ten matchup earlier, the Badgers are credited with the Biggest Move of the Week after soaring nine spots to become co-No. 13. The Big Ten runner-ups went 10-11-16-18-23 for 78 points, finishing ahead of third-place Michigan State (82) and fourth-place Michigan (85). The Spartans improved to No. 16 and the Wolverines fell to No. 12.
Moving from the Land of Receiving Votes to the National Coaches’ Poll are No. 20 Oregon, No. 28 West Virginia, No. 29 Gonzaga and No. 30 Kentucky. The Zags are making their first top-30 appearance since 2015 thanks to a runner-up finish at the West Coast Conference Championships.
Mark your calendars for Saturday, November 20 as the 2021 NCAA Division I Cross Country Championships will take place at Apalachee Regional Park in Tallahassee, Florida! Remember that you can watch ALL of the action commercial-free on ESPNU starting at 10 am ET!