UT Men's Cross Country Selected Fourth in Preseason SSC Poll

UT Men's Cross Country Selected Fourth in Preseason SSC Poll

MELBOURNE, Fla. – Sunshine State Conference men's cross country coaches selected the University of Tampa to finish fourth with Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University as the preseason favorite in 2019. The Eagles are expected to repeat as league champions after receiving 63 points and seven first-place votes in the ranking.

Florida Southern College comes in second with 55 points, followed by Saint Leo University in third with 48 points. Both the Moccasins and the Lions received a first-place vote from league coaches. UT and Lynn University round out the Top-5 teams in the poll with 46 and 38 points, respectively. Nova Southeastern University (26 points), Florida Tech (23 points), Palm Beach Atlantic University (17 Points), and Rollins College (8 points) occupy the final four positions in the slate.

Head coach Dror Vaknin welcomes the return of several top performers from last season, including Trevor Kattenberg. In seven races last season, the junior from Satellite Beach, Fla., was the top Spartan in five of those. He also concluded the year as the team's top finisher at both the SSC Championships and NCAA South Regional with fifth and 12th-place performances respectively.

Last season, ERAU claimed its first SSC men's championship title and first NCAA Division II South Region title. Along with the Eagles, Florida Southern (3rd), Saint Leo (6th), Tampa (7th), Lynn (8th), and Nova Southeastern (10th) finished Top-10 at the regional meet. Both Embry-Riddle (29th) and Florida Southern (30th) represented the SSC at the NCAA Division II National Meet.

Lynn will host the 2019 Sunshine State Conference Men's & Women's Cross Country Championships. The event will take place on Saturday, October 26th at South County Regional Park in Boca Raton. Previously, Nova Southeastern hosted the 2017 championship at South County Regional Park. Florida Southern will host the regional competition on Saturday, November 9th at Holloway Park in Lakeland. California State University - Sacramento will host the NCAA Finals along with the Sacramento Sports Commission on Saturday, November 23rd at Haggin Oaks Golf Complex in Sacramento.

Tampa opens its 2019 season on Friday, September 6 at the Valdosta State Invitational. The UT schedule features six regular-season competitions followed by the SSC race, NCAA South Regional and the NCAA Championships.

2019 SSC MEN'S CROSS COUNTRY PRESEASON COACHES POLL

Rank

School

Total

1

Embry-Riddle

63 (7)

2

Florida Southern

55 (1)

3

Saint Leo

48 (1)

4

Tampa

46

5

Lynn

38

6

Nova Southeastern

26

7

Florida Tech

23

8

Palm Beach Atlantic

17

9

Rollins

8

*First Place Votes