For the first time in program history the NMHU women's track and field team sits atop the NCAA Central Region rankings determined by the United States Track and Field and Cross Country Coaches Association.
The Cowgirls are leading by nearly 30 points over second-ranked Chadron State. The rankings are determined by a point system that compares performances in each event versus other regional teams. The Highlands women are well ahead of RMAC foes Western State (No. 4) and Adams State (No. 7) in this past week’s ranking.
The NMHU women also joined the top 25 this week in the national rankings. The Cowgirls are currently No. 24 on the national list. The national team computer rankings are used to create an index that showcases the teams that have the best potential of achieving the top spots in the national-title race — not as a method to compare teams head-to-head. The Regional Index is determined using a similar method as national rankings, but on a smaller scale, comparing teams versus others within the same region. The result is a ranking that showcases squads with better all-around team potential — a group makeup critical for conference or similar team-scored events, according to the USTFCCCA.
Additionally, Jillisa Grant was named the RMAC Track Athlete of the Week following her record-setting performance at the UNM Tailwind Invite. Grant assumed the national lead in the long jump with a leap of 20-4 and is among the top five in the nation in both the 100 and 200 meters. She also ran legs on the nationally-ranked 400-meter and 1,600-meter relays.
Grant will join several NMHU athletes in competing at the Mount Sac Relays next week in Walnut, Calif., while other members of the team will travel to Pueblo, Colo. for the CSU Multis and Invite.