Track & Field Teams Picked 1st, 2nd in HCAC Outdoor Poll

west-runTERRE HAUTE, IND. -- The Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology men's track and field team has been unanimously selected as the preseason favorite to capture its fourth consecutive Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference Outdoor Track and Field championship, in balloting by league coaches released today.

The Fightin' Engineers have won three consecutive HCAC Outdoor Track and Field titles and won the inaugural league Indoor Championship last month.

During the indoor season, senior Derek Bischak (Angola) and senior Paul Bouagnon (St. Charles, Ill./Burlington Central) shared HCAC Track Athlete of the Year honors.

Junior Sutton Coleman (Lebanon, Va.) was named HCAC Outdoor Men's Track Athlete of the Year last spring and earned All-American honors in the indoor 55-meter hurdles last weekend.

Bischak won the 1,500-meter run title last spring at the HCAC Outdoor Championships, and junior Micah Aldrich (Indianapolis/ Warren Central) looks to defend his 3,000-meter steeplechase title.  Andrew Thompson (Mundelin/Vernon Hills) was named HCAC Freshman of the Year during the indoor season and provides another multiple event contender.

The women's squad was picked to finish second in the preseason poll of league coaches, after capturing the inaugural Indoor Championship with its 10-member team.  Rose-Hulman received four first-place votes from the league's 10 coaches.

NCAA Division III high jump national champion and HCAC Indoor Field Athlete of the Year Liz Evans (Bicknell/North Knox) leads the women's squad.  Defending outdoor conference champions on the women's squad include sophomore Tanya Colonna (Brecksville, Ohio) in the pole vault and sophomore Creasy Clauser (Crawfordsville/Southmont) in the 800 meters.  Erin Cox (West Harrison/Franklin County) was named HCAC Indoor Freshman of the Year to provide additional depth in multiple events.

The outdoor season begins with the Rose-Hulman Early Bird Invitational this Saturday at the William Welch Track and Field Complex.

2011 HCAC Men's Track and Field Preseason Poll:
1) Rose-Hulman 100 (10)

2) Defiance 89
3) Franklin 76
4) Anderson 71
5) Mount St. Joseph 57
6) Manchester 51
7) Earlham 39
8) Hanover 34
9) Transylvania 19
10) Bluffton 14

2011 HCAC Women's Track and Field Preseason Poll:
1) Franklin 95 (6)
2) Rose-Hulman 88 (4)

3) Hanover 76
4) Defiance 71
5) Manchester 68
6) Anderson 47
7) Mount St. Joseph 45
8) Earlham 28
9) Transylvania 19
10) Bluffton 13