Notre Dame Fighting Irish - Official Athletics Website

Women's Cross Country Ranked Third In Preseason Poll

Sept. 11, 2003

The 2003 NCAA cross country season is just under way throughout the country. The University of Notre Dame is set to play host to its first of two home meets on Friday, Sept. 19, when the traditional National Catholic Championship is scheduled.

The Irish did run a tune up meet last weekend at the Valparaiso Invitational, as the women finished first (led by individual winner Jean Marinangeli) and the men took second place.

Both teams figure to return to the NCAA Championship at the end of the season, while the women’s team might have the ability to compete for the national championship. The Irish women finished third last year and welcome back all seven runners who saw action in the championship race. Led by junior Lauren King (19th, NCAA meet, 2002 BIG EAST individual champion) and Molly Huddle (sixth, NCAA meet, 2002 BIG EAST runner up), the Irish are ranked third in the FinishLynx preseason top 25. The third-place rating is by far the highest the Notre Dame women have been ranked in the preseason.

On the men’s side, Notre Dame is ranked 18th in the preseason poll and sixth in the Great Lakes region. Notre Dame’s string of top-10 finishes at the NCAA Championship was broken last season when the Irish finished 22nd at the national meet. After placing eighth in ’99, ninth in ’00 and sixth in ’01, the Irish slipped to 22nd last season when top runner and All-America candidate Todd Mobley was injured in the Pre-National race.

Mobley had to sit out the BIG EAST Championship, but returned to gut through the Great Lakes Regional and NCAA meet while not at 100%. The senior has returned this season and, along with sophomore Tim Moore (who stepped up to lead the team in Mobley’s absence) has his eyes set on returning Notre Dame to the top 10 in the nation.

The 48th annual National Catholic Invitational begins at 4:15 p.m. on Friday, Sept. 19, with the women’s varsity race (junior varsity races will be run earlier in the day).

2003 FinishLynx NCAA Division I Women’s Cross Country Poll

1. BYU

2. Stanford


4. Colorado

5. Villanova

6. Providence

7. Wake Forest

8. Georgetown

9. Columbia

10. Northern Arizona

11. North Carolina

12. Michigan

13. Michigan State

14. North Carolina State

15. Arkansas

16. Duke

17. Missouri

18. Indiana

19. Arizona State

20. Virginia

21. Penn State

22. Boston College

23. Wisconsin

24. UCLA

25. William & Mary

26. Colorado State

27. Marquette

28. Texas A&M

29. SW Missouri State

30. West Virginia

Also receiving votes: Cornell, Washington, Auburn, Baylor, Toledo, Minnesota, Dartmouth, Weber State, Yale, Kentucky, Florida State.

2003 MONDO NCAA Division I Men’s Cross Country Poll

1. Stanford

2. Wisconsin

3. Arkansas

4. Oregon

5. Northern Arizona

6. Colorado

7. Michigan

8. Central Michigan

9. Iona College

10. Eastern Michigan

10. Villanova

12. BYU

13. Georgetown

14. NC State

15. William & Mary

16. Providence

17. Indiana


19. Minnesota

20. Cal Poly SLO

21. Weber State

22. Butler

23. Colorado State

24. Texas

25. Oklahoma State

26. Ohio State

26. Iowa

28. Portland

28. Michigan State

30. Montana State

Also receiving votes: SMU, Texas A&M, Dartmouth, Princeton, New Mexico, Georgia, Washington, Arizona State, Columbia, Florida, Arizona, Air Force, Miami (Ohio), Florida State, Duke, Alabama, Utah State, LaSalle