Sept. 2, 2015


NOTRE DAME, Ind. – The Notre Dame women’s cross country team was selected as the preseason conference favorite in the annual coaches’ poll, the Athletic Coast Conference announced Wednesday. Considered the group projected to bring home the ACC title, the Fighting Irish held off second-place NC State in the preseason standings.

Notre Dame welcomes the nation’s top freshmen class of distance runners this season, as determined by both FloTrack and The squad returns Molly Seidel, who became Notre Dame’s first All-American since 2009 and finished 19th overall at the 2014 NCAA Cross Country Championships, as well as NCAA finishers Danielle Aragon, Karen Lesiewicz, Taylor Driscoll and Sydni Meunier. Overall, the women’s contingent posted a 29th-place showing at the NCAA Championships.

On the men’s side, the Fighting Irish are projected to finish eighth in the conference. Syracuse, which captured the 2013 and 2014 ACC men’s titles, led the standings as a near-unanimous selection.

Michael Clevenger, a senior this season, was Notre Dame’s lone qualifier for the men’s team at the NCAA championships last season. A trio of freshmen – Aaron Roe, Joseph Suarez and Anthony Williams – will strive to have an immediate impact on the rebuilding contingent.

Notre Dame opens the season Friday with the Crusader Invitational hosted by Valparaiso University. Events are scheduled to commence at 4 p.m. (ET) at Sunset Hill Farm County Park in Valparaiso, Ind.

For up-to-date information on Notre Dame Track and Field/Cross Country, follow the Fighting Irish on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.

The complete predicted order of finish by ACC head coaches follows:

1. Notre Dame
2. NC State
3. Virginia
4. North Carolina
5. Florida State
6. Syracuse
7. Boston College
8. Virginia Tech
9. Wake Forest
10. Duke
11. Louisville
12. Georgia Tech
13. Clemson
14. Pitt
15. Miami

1. Syracuse
2. Virginia
3. NC State
4. Virginia Tech
5. Florida State
6. Louisville
7. North Carolina
8. Notre Dame
9. Duke
10. Clemson
11. Wake Forest
12. Georgia Tech
13. Boston College
14. Pitt
15. Miami