Mount Olive Tabbed Favorite in 2019 Conference Carolinas Women’s Cross Country Preseason Poll

GREENVILLE, S.C. – Mount Olive was voted to defend its title in the 2019 Conference Carolinas Women’s Cross Country Preseason Poll.

Mount Olive will be looking for its fifth straight Conference Carolinas championship in the 2019 season. The Trojans received nine first-place votes and a total of 118 points to claim the top spot in the preseason tally. 

Not far behind the Trojans in the preseason poll is North Greenville, who finished with a total of 107 points. North Greenville was second at the 2018 Conference Carolinas Women’s Cross Country Championship. The Crusaders received two first-place votes in the preseason poll. 

King received the final first-place vote in addition to four second-place and four third-place votes. The Tornado with a total of 102 points are third in the 2019 preseason poll. Southern Wesleyan (98) is in fourth, while Belmont Abbey (83) is fifth in the preseason tally. 

The top six in the preseason poll mirrors the top six at the 2018 Conference Carolinas Women’s Cross Country Championship with Limestone (57) sixth. 

Emmanuel (56) finished in eighth at last year’s championship, but the Lions were tabbed seventh in the preseason poll. Lees-McRae (47) was picked eighth in the preseason tally. Converse and Barton with a total of 43 points each were picked for a tie in ninth. Erskine (27) and Chowan (15) were the final two in the 2019 Conference Carolinas Women’s Cross Country Preseason Poll.

Team First Place Total 
1. Mount Olive 9 118
2. North Greenville 2 107
3. King 1 102
4. Southern Wesleyan   94
5. Belmont Abbey   83
6. Limestone   57
7. Emmanuel   56
8. Lees-McRae   47
T9. Converse   43
T9. Barton   43
11. Erskine   27
12. Chowan   15


Conference Carolinas Women’s Cross Country Runners to Watch (Submitted by Conference Carolinas Coaches)

Meghan Araldi, Barton, Sr., Albany, N.Y.
Kirstin Barton*, King, Sr., San Antonio, Texas (2018 first team All-Conference Carolinas)
Sarah Bowman, Lees-McRae, Sr., Burlington, N.C.
Madeline Carkeet, Mount Olive, Fr., Hope Mills, N.C.
Caroline Felkel, Converse, So., Campobello, S.C.
Piper Grant, Converse, Fr., Rock Hill, S.C.
Leah Hanle*, Mount Olive, Sr., Lichtenstein, Germany (2018 first team All-Conference Carolinas)
Brianne Heard*, Lees-McRae, So, Kannapolis, N.C. (2018 third team All-Conference Carolinas)
Annie Hetzel, Belmont Abbey, Sr., Weddington, N.C.
Kyra Hood*, Southern Wesleyan, Jr. Northport, Ala. (2018 third team All-Conference Carolinas)
Lela Knight, Chowan, Jr., Poquoson, Va.
Savannah Lamb, Belmont Abbey, Sr., Mint Hill, N.C.
Madison Lewellen*, Southern Wesleyan, So., Bluffton, S.C. (2018 third team All-Conference Carolinas)
Mary Ashley Moore, Erskine, Jr., Ninety Six, S.C.
Lizzie Naval, Erskine, Fr., Summerville, S.C.
Jordan Onufer, Converse, So., Spartanburg, S.C.
Maegan Prettyman, Lees-McRae, So., Morganton, N.C.
Maggie Rice*, Southern Wesleyan, Jr., Clearwater, Fla. (2018 third team All-Conference Carolinas)
Kaitlin Rivera, King, Sr., Knoxville, Tenn. (2018 Conference Carolinas Women’s Cross Country Elite 23 award winner)
Taylor Rusnak, Belmont Abbey, Jr., Haiku, Hawaii
Hailey Russell, Barton, Fr., Jacksonville, N.C.
Brittany Smith, Erskine, Sr., Gainesville, Ga.
Rebekah Thomas, King, So., Glade Spring, Va.
Grace Valentine, North Greenville, So., Campobello, S.C.
Hope Whisman*, North Greenville, Sr. (2018 second team All-Conference Carolinas)

* - Denotes 2018 Conference Carolinas All-Conference Runner

About Conference Carolinas

Conference Carolinas has a rich tradition in roots that dates back to its early initial inception on Dec. 6, 1930. The NCAA Division II athletics conference presently has member schools located in Georgia, North Carolina, South Carolina and Tennessee.

Conference Carolinas member institutions for the upcoming 2019-20 athletic year are Barton, Belmont Abbey, Chowan, Converse, Emmanuel, Erskine, King, Lees-McRae, Limestone, Mount Olive, North Greenville and Southern Wesleyan. 

Conference Carolinas believes in the development and formation of the whole person in body, mind and soul. Our students are nationally recognized for their extraordinary success in the classroom, in the community and at the highest levels of NCAA competition.

Please visit conferencecarolinas.com to learn more about Conference Carolinas.