Oct. 26, 2012
LAS VEGAS - Sophomore Holly Page showed her postseason mettle again Friday in Las Vegas, turning in the best finish of the day for Wyoming at the Mountain West Cross Country Championships at Silver Bowl Park in Las Vegas.
After garnering MW Freshman of the Year honors at the conference meet in 2011, Page turned in a great performance again, finishing fourth in the 6-kilometer event with a time of 21 minutes, 2 seconds. Her performance earned her First Team MW honors for the first time in her young career.
"Holly was the highlight of the day for us," said Wyoming coach Bryan Berryhill. "She gave a great performance in a tough field of runners and shined for us. If she keeps her momentum and does well at regionals in a couple of weeks, she has a great shot of qualifying as an individual for the NCAA Championship."
Page was an integral part of the Cowgirl team that finished sixth out of nine teams with 151 points, just two points shy of a fifth-place showing. Senior Abi Bever was the second UW woman across the line, finishing 28th with a time of 22:07, followed by sophomore Devon England in 36th (22:24), junior Emily Swigart in 40th (22:54) and senior Brooke Hughes in 43rd with a time of 23:04. Redshirt sophomore Christine Nelson was 46th (23:07) and sophomore Jessica Lemaster was 56th in 23:43.
In the team standings, the New Mexico women won their fifth straight league crown with 35 points, followed by Colorado State in second with 63 points. Boise State was third (72), Air Force was fourth (92) and Nevada was fifth (149). After Wyoming, Fresno State was seventh (204), San Diego State was eighth (210) and UNLV was ninth, 278.
For the UW men, junior Garrett Zans was the top finisher, crossing the line in 16th with a time of 24 minutes, 57 seconds. He was followed by redshirt freshman Aaron Derner, who earned a mark of 25:13 to finish 26th. Freshman Mike Seas finished 32nd (25:50), senior Michael Banks was 35th (26:09) and freshman Alex Pawlak completed the scoring for UW, finishing 38th with a time of 26:29. Senior Tyler Gifford was 39th (27:04) and junior Ken Lane was 40th in 27:09.
As a team, the Cowboys were fifth of six teams with 147 points in the 8-kilometer race. The New Mexico men won for the fourth year in a row with 22 points, followed by Air Force in second (49), Colorado State (75), Boise State (102) and Fresno State, which was sixth with 154 points.
"Both of our squads were solid overall, but we didn't do what we needed to in order to finish near the top," Berryhill said. "We have an opportunity to regroup for regionals and continue to improve so we can finish the year strong."
Up next for the UW men and women is the NCAA Mountain Regional, which takes place Nov. 9 in Fort Collins, Colo.