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Top 25 Poll - No. 2

September 21, 2011
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Contact: Amanda Dahl, NAIA Manager of Sports Information & Media Services, adahl@naia.org

KANSAS CITY, Mo. -For the second-straight week, Azusa Pacific (Calif.) owns the No. 1-ranking in the second edition of the 2011 NAIA Women's Cross Country Coaches' Top 25 Poll, the national office announced Wednesday. The Cougars were awarded 19 first place-votes for 560 points. It is the first time since the 2009 season that Azusa Pacific has topped the poll in back-to-back weeks.

Cal State San Marcos and Biola (Calif.) remained in the Nos. 2 and 3 spots, respectively. The Cougars tallied 541 points, including one first-place vote, while the Eagles racked up 524 points. Olivet Nazarene (Ill.) climbed to No. 4 with 499 points to earn its highest ranking since being ranked second in 2006. Northwest Christian (Ore.) made the biggest jump of any team, rocketing from No. 15 to 5 with 484 points. The No. 5-ranking marks the first time that the Beacons have been ranked among the top five and is only their fourth rating in program history, dating back to 1999.

In addition to Northwest Christian’s first-time moment, No. 24 Cumberlands (Ky.) and No. 25 St. Francis (Ill.) had their own. It has been seven years since the Patriots were listed on the poll, last occupying the No. 25 spot on the Sept. 26, 2003 poll. The new ranking is just the third in the team’s history. The Fighting Saints are ranked for the first time in program history. The newcomers replace previously-ranked No. 11 Concordia (Neb.) and No. 25 Point Loma Nazarene (Calif.).

Twelve conferences/independents/unaffiliated groups are represented throughout the Top 25, led by five squads from the Cascade Collegiate Conference: Northwest Christian, No. 7 College of Idaho, No. 9 Concordia (Ore.), No. 14 Southern Oregon and No. 21 Eastern Oregon.

The poll was voted upon by a panel of head coaches representing each of the conferences/independents/unaffiliated groups. The next Top 25 poll will be announced on Sept. 28.

Notes: (All information dates back to 1999) Azusa Pacific’s (Calif.) spent consecutive weeks at No. 1 for the first time since the 2009 season when the Cougars occupied the top spot for eight-straight polls … Azusa Pacific’s 12 No. 1-rankings is fourth all-time … Former NAIA members Simon Fraser (B.C.) and Cedarville (Ohio) top the list with 40 and 18 appearances, respectively, followed by Northwest (Wash.) with 17 … Simon Fraser is the only team that has started the season ranked No. 1 and gone on to win the national championship, doing so in 2004, 05, 06 and 07 … There have been four seasons in which a squad held the No. 1-ranking for an entire season: 2007 – Simon Fraser, 2006 – Simon Fraser, 2005 – Simon Fraser and 2003 – Northwest (Wash.) … Only two schools have an active streak of 50-or more appearances in the Top 25, led by No. 19 Lewis-Clark State (Idaho) with 96 dating back to Sept. 21, 2001, and Azusa Pacific with 76, dating back to Oct. 3, 2003.

RANK LAST WEEK SCHOOL (1ST PLACE VOTES) TOTAL POINTS
1 1 Azusa Pacific (Calif.) (19) 560
2 2 Cal State San Marcos (1) 541
3 3 Biola (Calif.) 524
4 5 Olivet Nazarene (Ill.) 499
5 15 Northwest Christian (Ore.) 484
6 6 British Columbia 462
7 4 College of Idaho 458
8 9 Friends (Kan.) 410
9 7 Concordia (Ore.) 409
10 13 Morningside (Iowa) 398
11 14 The Master's (Calif.) 361
12 10 Indiana Wesleyan 343
13 16 Carroll (Mont.) 342
14 8 Southern Oregon 308
15 12 Aquinas (Mich.) 298
16 18 Embry-Riddle (Fla.) 288
17 17 Westmont (Calif.) 265
18 22 Saint Xavier (Ill.) 220
19 19 Lewis-Clark State (Idaho) 216
20 24 Dordt (Iowa) 191
21 20 Eastern Oregon 185
22 23 Taylor (Ind.) 174
23 21 Viterbo (Wis.) 162
24 RV Cumberlands (Ky.) 127
25 RV St. Francis (Ill.) 91

Others receiving votes: Cornerstone (Mich.) 86; Milligan (Tenn.) 73; Roberts Wesleyan (N.Y.) 59; Doane (Neb.) 56; Point Loma Nazarene (Calif.) 51; Rocky Mountain (Mont.) 36; Shawnee State (Ohio) 28; Concordia (Neb.) 27; Judson (Ill.) 22; Oklahoma Christian 19; Spring Arbor (Mich.) 19; Baker (Kan.) 18; Texas Wesleyan 14; Trinity Christian (Ill.) 8; SCAD Savannah (Ga.) 7; Shorter (Ga.) 7; Central Methodist (Mo.) 3; Southwestern (Kan.) 1; Park (Mo.) 1; Grand View (Iowa) 1; Northwest (Wash.) 1; St. Ambrose (Iowa) 1.