Sept. 15, 2012
BOZEMAN, Mont. - Following a good start to the 2012 season last week at the Rust Buster, the Cowboy and Cowgirl cross country teams earned great marks in week two at the Montana State Invitational Saturday morning in Bozeman, Mont.
The men's team placed second with 49 points in a five-mile race, while Holly Page earned an individual title in a three-mile run to lead the women's team to a tie for third with Utah State at 75 points.
"Both of our teams had great performances today and exceeded expectations," said Wyoming coach Bryan Berryhill. "We did a much better job of staying together this week and we made quite a bit of progress, so we're pleased with the results."
Page's individual title was the first win of her collegiate career as she paced the course in 17:17, two seconds ahead of Utah State's Alex Litzsinger. Redshirt sophomore Christine Nelson placed 10th in 18:00 and was pursued closely by sophomore Devon England, who finished 13th in 18:07. Cowgirls Abi Bever and Audra DeStefano also scored for the team with respective finishes of 21st place and 30th place.
"That was huge for Holly to get her first individual victory and a huge confidence booster for her as she's turning into a phenomenal runner," Berryhill said. "I would like us to close the gap with our 3-4-5 runners to try to keep that pack time in check."
Brooke Hughes (38th, 18:40), Jessica Lemaster (52nd, 19:16), Emily Swigart (57th, 19:23), Catherine Cloetta (60th, 19:29), Krysha Brisendine (71st, 19:58) and Courtney Madson (78th, 20:11) also competed for the Cowgirls.
For the Cowboys, redshirt freshman Aaron Derner once again led the team as he finished fourth overall with a five-mile time of 24:59. He was followed by junior Garrett Zans' sixth-place time of 25:07 and freshman Mike Seas' 12th-place mark of 25:46. Senior Michael Banks (26:00) and freshman Alex Pawlak (26:07) also scored for the Cowboys with respective placements of 14th and 16th.
"The men's team performed well and I'm pleased with the direction they're going," Berryhill said. "I'm happy to see Aaron and Garrett leading the way, but more impressed with the 3-4-5 runners doing well with true freshmen in the mix."
Montana State placed first on the women's side with 61 points, while Weber State won the men's side with 48 points.
Wyoming competes next Saturday hosting the Always a Cowboy 8k run/5k walk set to begin at 9 a.m. in Laramie.