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Oct. 21, 2008
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa.: October 21, 2008 - On the heels of dual second places finishes at the Penn State National last weekend, both Nittany Lion cross country teams have seen improvements in their national rankings, as the women cracked the top 20 for the first time this season at No. 19, and the men appear on the national radar for the first time in 2008, just outside the Top 30 among Others Receiving Votes.
Both Lion squads earned runner-up finishes last Friday, with the women taking second behind only No. 5 West Virginia, and the men finishing second to only No. 10 Georgetown. The Lions were led by a fourth-place effort from junior Bridget Franek (Hiram, Ohio) on the women's side, while redshirt-freshman Kyle Dawson (Coatesville, Pa.) turned in a fifth-place finish in his collegiate debut to pace the Nittany Lion men.
The latest rankings also give the Lions a boost going into the Big Ten Championships, set for November 2, as the Penn State men are the fifth conference team in the standings behind No. 6 Wisconsin, No. 9 Michigan, No. 19 Indiana, and No. 20 Minnesota. The Nittany Lion women also find themselves in stacked field going into the conference meet as they are also fifth among ranked Big Ten opponents, including No. 7 Minnesota, No. 8 Michigan, No. 9 Michigan State, and No. 10 Illinois.
Next up for the Lions is the Big Ten Cross Country Championships on Sunday, November 2, in Ann Arbor, Mich.