RECAP: Labor Day Weekend Opens Collegiate Cross Country Season

By Tom Lewis, USTFCCCA

September 5, 2010   

Check out all the weekend’s results at the USTFCCCA’s Weekly Results page

Huskies Outrun The Cougs In Season-Opening Duel
source: Washington athletics

EPHRATA, Wash. – The Huskies outpaced the Cougars in the middle of the state this evening, as the two rivals opened up the 2010 cross country season with a dual race at Ephrata High School, which counts Washington head coach Greg Metcalf as an alumnus.

The new addition to the schedule is believed to be the first-ever head-to-head race between the Huskies and Cougars. Dual meet races are very rare these days in collegiate cross country, making today’s race a special way to open up the season.

The third-ranked Husky women opened with a 24-33 victory over their cross-state counterparts, led by senior Kailey Campbell who got the victory over the 4,000-meter course in 14-minutes even. Sophomores Lindsay Flanagan and Kayla Evans were third and fourth overall, while redshirt freshmen Breanna Huschka and Alison Ponce were seventh and ninth, respectively, to round out the UW women’s team score. Ruby Roberts led the Cougars, taking second, 12-seconds behind Campbell.

Jono Lafler of Washington State won the men’s 6,000-meter race in 18:22, but was closely pursued by four Huskies, who finished second through fifth. Junior Cameron Quackenbush, sophomore Joey Bywater, and junior Max O’Donoghue-McDonald, all of whom ran at the NCAA Championships last season, were second, third, and fourth within one second of each other at 18:27. Redshirt freshman Gareth Gilna had a strong first run in a Husky singlet, taking fifth in 18:34. (more)

Newcomers lead charge for Men’s No. 7 Wisconsin in season-opener
source: Wisconsin athletics

VERONA, Wis. — Led by redshirt freshman Michael Brice’s season-opening win, the No. 7 Wisconsin men’s cross country team swept the top five spots en route to winning their own Badger Classic at the Zimmer Championship Cross Country Course.

Both the UW men’s and women’s teams hosted the second-annual Badger Classic, and both showed promise for the upcoming season. 

The Wisconsin men started off their campaign by tallying a perfect team score of 15 on the way to a first-place finish in the 8-kilometer race.

Brice led the charge in a personal-best time of 25 minutes, 5 seconds, with a pack of his teammates not far back at the front of the field.

Junior Phil Thomas finished second with a time of 25:16, followed by redshirt freshman Drew Shields in 25:19. Neal Berman and Alex Brill took fourth and fifth, respectively, with Berman finishing in 25:22 and Brill clocking in at 25:24. 

“It was a great start to the season,” Brice said. “We’ve only had two weeks of training, including our camp in Door County, but I thought everyone ran well. 

“To get a perfect score is about all you can hope for.” (more)

Division III’s Top-Ranked Washington (Mo.) Tops In-State Division I Foe
source: Washington (Mo.) athletics

ST. LOUIS, Mo., – The top-ranked Washington University in St. Louis men’s cross country team and the No. 4 women’s team both captured first place at the Washington University Early Bird Meet on Saturday, Sept. 4, at the Central Fields of Forest Park in St. Louis, Mo.
       
The WUSTL men’s team submitted a score of 46 points to edge NCAA Division I Southeast Missouri State University by one point for the meet victory. In the women’s race, Washington University placed five runners in the top 12 to submit a mark of 27 points, which was 90 points better than second-place Southeast Missouri.
       
Junior Liz Phillips placed first overall in the women’s race, completing the 4K course in just 14:37.7, a pace of 5:54. Washington U. freshman Sarah Fisher came in fourth with a time of 15:06.7 and senior Jessica Londeree was the sixth-place finisher, running the course in 15:30.4.
       
Also scoring for the WUSTL women’s team was freshman Alyssa Tutterow, with a time of 15:47.6, good for 10th-place overall, and junior Molly Wawrzyniak, who finished 12th with a time of 15:51.6. (more)

No. 13 Arkansas Paced by Senior Chinchar Sweeps Missouri Southern
source: Arkansas athletics

FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. – Senior Michael Chinchar won his first collegiate cross country race and paced the No. 13 Arkansas Razorback men’s cross country team to a victory at the season-opening Arkansas Invitational.

The Razorbacks and Missouri Southern ran a 6,600-meter race at Agri Park, in Fayetteville, Friday night. Arkansas won the team race with a perfect 15 points and Missouri Southern scored 50 points. Arkansas swept the top 10 spots and finished all 11 runners in the top 14.

“We got some things accomplished tonight,” head coach Chris Bucknam said. “I think the main thing right now is getting the team back into a rhythm. We are concentrating on the things we do every day during the season, warming up, competing and cooling down. The conditions were good and the course is in good shape. It was great to see Duncan Phillips, back from redshirting, out there running with the group and I think we took a small step forward.” (more)

No. 1 Stanford Sweeps Nighttime Jim Heuval Twilight in Nevada
source: Stanford athletics

RENO, Nev. – The Stanford cross country teams got the season underway Friday night under the lights by sweeping both races in a rare night cross country meet. Both teams took the Jim Heuval Twilight Invitational title raced at Shadow Mountain Park.

The women were led by Alexandra Gits, who took the individual title with a 4,000-meter time of 14:54. The Cardinal scored just 27 points to easily outdistance UC Riverside who had 45. Stanford ran only five runners in both races, leaving most of its top runners behind at Lake Tahoe where the annual preseason training camp is taking place this year.

Other top-5 performances for the women came from Georgia Griffin and Madeline Duhon. Griffin was fourth in 15:26, while Duhon was fifth in 15:39. Victoria Pennings finished just behind her teammates in sixth with a time of 15:52. Rounding out the five was Emilie Amaro, who placed 15th with a time of 16:37. Amaro is returning from a redshirt season last year with an injury after having an outstanding freshman season.

On the men’s side, the Cardinal squeaked out the victory with 34 points, while second-place UC Riverside had 37. The No. 1 team in the country ran nowhere near its top team, but still managed to win the meet. (more)

Top Five Oregon Squads Open Season With Winners at Oregon State
source: Oregon athletics

CORVALLIS, Ore. – Freshman Ben DeJarnette and senior Zoe Buckman led the Men and Women of Oregon to victories at the cross country season-opening John Frank Invitational Friday night at Avery Park.

“It was a good race for us because it was the first time to see the men and women get out and run,” said associate head coach Andy Powell. “The women looked strong. They did a nice job of running together in a pack.”

Buckman’s win merely punctuated how impressive Oregon’s women were in controlling the 4,500 meter race. All six Duck runners moved to the lead on the second lap and finished first, second, third, fourth, sixth and seventh as No. 5 Oregon won the race with 16 points. The Portland Pilots were second with 57 points, followed by Oregon State (59) and Portland State (103).

Buckman, from Canberra, Australia, won in 16:00.6, with sophomore Sarah Penny second at 16:01.6.

“It was a fun race,” said Buckman. “It was nice to get out there and run with my teammates and work together.”

Lanie Thompson, a redshirt freshman from High Bridge, N.J., finished third in 16:02.6 in her Oregon debut.

“Finally!” said Thompson. “I’ve waited so long. It felt good to get out there and be a part of this team.” (more)