Chris Kendrick (@CKendrick86)
ATTLEBORO, Mass. – The Elms College men's cross country team was voted to finish third in the 2016 New England Collegiate Conference (NECC) Men's Cross Country Coaches' Preseason Poll, released by the league office Monday.
The Blazers received 45 total points, finishing 15 points behind favorite Southern Vermont. Elms brings back senior Joshua Diaz Rolon (Chicopee, Mass.) from the 2015 squad who claimed third at the NECC Championships last October.
Southern Vermont was chosen to repeat as the NECC Champions with six of the eight first place votes for a total of 60 points, as voted on by the NECC head coaches.
The Mountaineers return the two time NECC Runner of the Year, Marc Brandmeyer, as well as two other top ten finishers in Noah Froh (5th), andCorey Barcomb (7th). They will look to their new comers to fill the void left by Justin Ferguson, who finished second at the 2015 NECC Championship meet.
Landing second on the polls was Regis College who hopes to continue their success with now sophomores Stephen McCall and Shane Romanchick. McCall earned 2015 NECC Rookie of the Year honors finishing just two seconds ahead of Mountaineers Froh for fourth place at the championship. Romanchick had a strong showing in the 2015 NECC Championship landing eighth overall.
Wheelock shocked many people in the conference with their fourth place finish at the NECC Championship last season and now finds themselves ranked fourth in the preseason polls with 38 points. The Wildcats will look to junior Ian Umphrey to lead the team after a 13th place finish at the 2015 NECC Championship meet.
Finishing just behind Wheelock is Lesley University who will look to their young core to carry the team through the 2016 season led by first year head coach Aaron Nelson. The Lynx will have to make up for the loss of top runner Ian Barber who finished third at last years championship meet.
Mitchell College finished in sixth place (24 points), Newbury College was close behind in seventh (22 points), and Daniel Webster College finished in eighth with 8 total points.
Most NECC teams will begin their meets on Saturday, September 3rd. The NECC Championship will be held at Stanley Park on Saturday, October 29th.
2016 NECC Men's Cross Country Preseason Coaches' Poll
Southern Vermont - 60
Regis - 55
Elms – 45
Wheelock - 38
Lesley - 36
Mitchell – 24
Newbury – 22
Daniel Webster - 8
ELMS CROSS COUNTRY