Lees-McRae tabbed third in Conference Carolinas Preseason Coaches’ Poll

HIGH POINT, N.C. --- The Lees-McRae College women's cross country team is picked to finish third in the race for the 2011 Conference Carolinas championship, announced league officials Wednesday with the release of the Conference Carolinas Preseason Coaches' Poll.

Queens University of Charlotte tops the poll with 121 points and 11 first-place votes, followed by Mount Olive College (91) and Lees-McRae, who received one first-place vote and 85 points. Converse College is fourth with 83 points, while King College rounds out the top five with 80 points. Barton College is sixth with 69 points, followed by Belmont Abbey College (68), Erskine College (57), Limestone College (49), Coker College (45), North Greenville University (26), and Pfeiffer University (18).

Lee-McRae will rely on a veteran core and an influx of gifted newcomers to carry it through a demanding schedule as the Bobcats claim the third spot in the league's preseason poll. Head coach Thomas Cason returns for his second season after leading the Bobcats to a third-place finish at the Conference Carolinas Championships last fall.

"We are looking forward to a great cross country season," said head coach Thomas Cason. "Our conference gets stronger every year, so we continue to work even harder in order to compete against such strong distance programs."

Cason welcomes senior Rayne Delutis (Christiansburg, Va.) back into the fold, along with juniors Lindsey Bush (Catawba, N.C.) and Cinthia Lehner (Greer, S.C.) to lead the Bobcats in their quest for the program's ninth conference championship

Lees-McRae opens the season on Friday when the Bobcats travel to Spartanburg, S.C. to participate in the Eye Opener Invitational, which is being held at the Roger Milliken Center.

- LMC -

Conference Carolinas Women's Cross Country Preseason Coaches' Poll

Rk. School (First-place votes) Points
1 Queens (11) 121
2 Mount Olive 91
3 Lees-McRae (1) 85
4 Converse 83
5 King 80
6 Barton 69
7 Belmont Abbey 68
8 Erskine 57
9 Limestone 49
10 Coker 45
11 North Greenville 26
12 Pfeiffer 18