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February 15, 2012

2012 Season - Vikings now fifth in NCAA poll

Brian Pollastrini, who has the fastest times for the Vikings in both the 3,000 and 5,000 meters so far this year, is one reason why Augustana has been ranked in the top five of the NCAA Division III power rankings all season.

As the season heats up, so has the Augustana men's indoor track and field team. The Vikings increased their point total in the NCAA Division III Indoor Dual Meet Rankings for the fourth consecutive week. They now have 148.76, which is up from 147.37 last week. However veteran head coach Paul Olsen's team actually dropped two spots to fifth.

The Vikings split their squad past this weekend and had tremendous performances at both venues. Some of the team competed at the Darren Young Classic in the Bear Athletic Center in Grinnell, Iowa while the majority of the team competed at the Augustana Open held at the PepsiCo Center in Rock Island, Illinois.

This poll, conducted by the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association, quantifies the depth of each team. The team's total score is the sum of all points earned in each event. Two individual athletes are scored per event, as well as one relay team. The points are based on the best marks of an event in the current season, with the faster times and farther distances worth more.

North Central, one of the Vikings' College Conference of Illinois and Wisconsin rivals, occupies the top spot in the rankings as they have done the whole year, posting 159.64 points. Bates jumped up from fifth to second this week, accumulating 150.78 points. UW Whitewater and Tufts are just ahead of Augustana, with 149.52 and 149.28 points, respectively. Massachusetts Institute of Technology stayed in the sixth spot, though now with 145.23 points, followed by UW Platteville with 144.59 points. Another CCIW rival, Illinois Wesleyan is in the eighth spot with 141.35 points, while Wabash (138.47) and Nebraska Wesleyan (138.43) round out the top ten.

The Vikings have been busy this season, competing in seven different meets. The Vikings hosted an Intra-squad meet on January 6th, where no team scores were kept. Augustana then traveled to Dubuque, Iowa on January 14th where it finished first of nine teams in the Sol Butler Classic. On January 21st, the Vikings won 11 events at the Midwest Invitational at Monmouth College but no team scores were kept. The Vikings won 11 more events at the Wartburg Lutheran Triangular on January 28th hosted by Wartburg College in Waverly, Iowa, and won the three-team competition. February 3rd the Vikings competed in the Converse Invitational held at University of Wisconsin-Whitewater, placing fifth.

The Vikings have two meets this week, a dual meet Thursday, February 16th at home against St. Ambrose, and will compete at the Dubuque Open in Dubuque, Iowa on Saturday, February 18.

2012 NCAA DIVISION III INDOOR DUAL MEET POWER RANKINGS

Sponsored by the USTFCCA

As of 02/14/2012

POLL #4

 

RANK

SCHOOL

REGION

POINTS

1.

North Central

Midwest

159.64

2.

Bates

New England

150.78

3.

University of Wisconsin, Whitewater

Midwest

149.52

4.

Tufts

New England

149.28

5.

AUGUSTANA

Midwest

148.76

6.

Massachusetts Institute of Technology

New England

145.23

7.

University of Wisconsin, Platteville

Midwest

144.59

8.

Illinois Wesleyan

Midwest

141.35

9.

Wabash

Great Lakes

138.47

10.

Nebraska Wesleyan

Central

138.43