Cross Country Preview

By Kevin Russell, Sports Editor

August 18, 2012

The men’s and women’s track and field teams were two of the more successful HPU programs in 2011.  With the women winning the Big South Conference Championship and the men finishing second, there is a lot to build upon in 2012.

The women’s team will return nine runners from last year’s team. Included amongst the returnees are Kayleigh Perry and Audrey Malloy. Perry finished third in last season’s Big South Championship while Malloy finished fifth.   Along with the nine returning runners, the women’s team has brought in eight new runners to help add depth to the team.

The men’s team, which narrowly fell to Big South juggernaut Liberty in last year’s Big South Championship, will return 10 runners in 2012. Two notable returnees are Jacob Smith and Patrick Crawford, both of whom received All-Conference honors last season. The men’s team has also brought in seven new members for this season.

Both teams will open their seasons on Aug. 31 at Wake Forest University in the Demon Deacon Quad Match. The Big South Championship will be held in Rock Hill, SC this season, on Oct.27.

Eighth year Head Coach, Mike Esposito seems extremely pleased with the direction of both programs and the schedule they were able to put together for this season.

“We will get an early look this season at both the Big South Championship course and the NCAA Southeast Regional course,” Esposito said via a press release on highpointpanthers.com. “Both the men and women return a solid group of runners and it should be an exciting season for High Point University cross country.”

Once again, look for both teams to be near the top at the Big South Championship race.