Reigning Champion SUNY Poly Finishes First in 2018 NEAC Men's Cross Country Preseason Poll

Reigning Champion SUNY Poly Finishes First in 2018 NEAC Men's Cross Country Preseason Poll

GANSEVOORT, N.Y. – Five-time conference champion SUNY Poly is expected to maintain a stronghold on the top spot in the league after finishing No. 1 in the 2018 North Eastern Athletic Conference (NEAC) men’s cross country preseason poll.

SUNY Poly garnered 10 first-place votes and 120 points to sit atop the preseason rankings. NEAC Coach of the Year Bill Tylutki is eager to get on the course with a strong team that returns its top five runners from 2017 and welcomes five freshmen. Noah Valvo (Town of Wright, N.Y.) will lead the Wildcats after earning NEAC Rookie of the Year honors last fall with a third-place finish at the NEAC Championship. Senior Ian Kurzrock (Woodbourne, N.Y.) and sophomore Jonathon Miller (Oneonta, N.Y.) also bring experience to the table after they finished fifth and seventh, respectively, at the championship race to pick up All-NEAC First Team accolades.

With one first-place vote and 105 points, SUNY Cobleskill was selected to finish second in the upcoming season. The Fighting Tigers will need to replace six seniors and four All-NEAC honorees from last year’s squad. Senior Josh Foust (West Sand Creek, N.Y.) looks to rebound after an injury-plagued 2017 season with an eye on adding to his all-conference awards from 2015 and 2016. Junior Scott LeBoeuf (Rochdale, Mass.) will also serve as a leader for the recruiting class after earning a spot on the 2017 All-NEAC Third Team.

Lancaster Bible landed at No. 3 with 99 points in the coaches’ vote. The Chargers return the bulk of a team that finished fourth at last season’s NEAC Championship. NEAC Runner of the Year Tanner Krob (Lisbon, Iowa) is back for his senior season while Stephen Marshall (Hampton, Va.) and Richard Haines (Rockville, Va.) are expected to help Lancaster Bible stay at the top of the league after earning All-NEAC honors in 2017. The group of newcomers includes Thatcher Krob (Lisbon, Iowa) who will be joining his brother this fall at Lancaster Bible.

The final first-place vote goes to Penn College as the Wildcats earned 43 points to finish fourth. A number of solid newcomers will join the returning core of Head Coach Nick Patton’s team that placed second at the 2017 conference championship. Junior Josh Velez (Lewistown, Pa.) leads the returners after running to a second-place finish at the NEAC Championship. Senior Thomas Runner (Elkridge, Md.) and sophomore Matt Leiby (Danville, Pa.) will also be looking to repeat last season’s success after earning All-Conference nods last fall.

After a fifth-place finish at the 2017 championship, Penn State Berks rounds out the top five in the poll with a total of 80 points. The Nittany Lions return four of their top runners from last season, including All-Conference selections Peter Vicari (Wernersville, Pa.) and William Graybill (Denver, Pa.). Vicari led all Berks runners at the NEAC Championship, capping off his rookie year with a 10th-place finish while Graybill placed 17th. Sophomores Matthew Straub (Reading, Pa.) and Yalikun Yaxiaer (Pittsburgh, Pa.) will also help solidify the Nittany Lions in the coming months.

The full 2018 NEAC men’s cross country preseason rankings can be found below:

Rank Institution (First-Place Votes) Total Points
1. SUNY Poly (10) 120
2. SUNY Cobleskill (1) 105
3. Lancaster Bible 99
4. Penn College (1) 93
5. Penn State Berks 80
6. Penn State Abington 66
7. Morrisville State  61
8. Wells College 52
9. Keuka College 42
10. Gallaudet University 35
11. Cazenovia College 23
12. College of Saint Elizabeth 16

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The preseason poll rankings were conducted by the NEAC men’s cross country coaches, with each coach ranking all teams but their own using a staggered points system (11 points for a first-place vote, 10 points for second, etc.). The 2018 NEAC men’s cross country season will be in full swing on Friday, Aug. 31, with the season schedule being available on the NEAC website.  

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The North Eastern Athletic Conference (NEAC) has 12 NCAA Division III member institutions which include: Cazenovia College, College of Saint Elizabeth, Gallaudet University, Keuka College, Lancaster Bible College, Pennsylvania College of Technology, Pennsylvania State University – Abington, Pennsylvania State University – Berks, SUNY Cobleskill, Morrisville State, SUNY Polytechnic Institute, and Wells College. Associate members are: Cedar Crest College (W Swimming), D’Youville College (W Lacrosse), Hilbert College (M&W Lacrosse), Medaille College (M&W Lacrosse), Rutgers University – Camden (M Golf), and Wilson College (M Volleyball). The NEAC has partnered with the North Atlantic Conference in the sport of men’s tennis and with the Colonial State Athletic Conference in the sport of Field Hockey. For more information, please visit: www.neacsports.com.