CHAPEL HILL, N.C. - The University of North Carolina cross country teams will compete at the 2013 NCAA Southeast Regional on Friday, November 15th, at the Panorama Farms course in Earlysville, Va. The men's 10K race begins at noon and is followed by the women's 6K race at 1:15 p.m.
The top two teams for each race will advance to the NCAA National Championships in Terre Haute, Ind., on Saturday, November 23rd. Thirteen additional at-large teams will receive national championship bids after all regionals have been completed to make up a total 31 teams competing at NCAAs.
In addition for individuals not on automatically advancing to nationals with their selected teams, the top four individuals out of each regional will advance to the NCAA Championships provided they finished in the top 25 of their respective race. Two at-large individual bids will be selected from the remaining national pool of runners.
The Carolina men's cross country team is coming an astounding ACC Championships performance where they finished second as a team and garnered four All-ACC individual honors in Ryan Walling, John Raneri, Pat Schellberg, and Isaac Presson. It was the program's highest finish since winning the conference crown in 1985.
The Tar Heel men have also won at the Panorama Farms course earlier in the 2013 season when they bested Southeast Region foes to win the Virginia Panorama Farms Invitational on September 28th. The win earned Carolina the No. 1 spot in the region for the month of October and a No. 13 ranking nationally as decided by the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association. Carolina is currently ranked No. 18 in the national poll and No. 2 in the Southeast by the USTFCCA rankings.
If the Tar Heel men were to advance as a team out of the Southeast Regional, it would be their first team national championship berth since 1991 when they placed 22nd at NCAAs.
The Carolina women are also coming off All-ACC performances by Annie LeHardy and Lizzy Whelan who helped the team finish ninth at the conference meet.
In 2012, Carolina had one All-Region recipient in Lianne Farber who went on to earn All-America honors at the NCAA National Championships. The most recent men's individual selection for the championship was Jake Hurysz in 2011.