June 2, 2011
LARAMIE, Wyo. - The Wyoming cross country program on Thursday announced its schedule for the upcoming season, beginning with the Wyoming Invitational on Sept. 2 in Laramie.
After the Cowboys and Cowgirls host their first event, they'll hit the road for six more events, with the possibility of seven if they qualify for the NCAA National Championship.
"I think the schedule provides us with a well-rounded progression towards the championships," Wyoming distance coach Randy Cole said. "It's a mix of smaller, low-key meets with championship-caliber invitationals leading into the conference championship. Like I always say, each meet is a stepping stone getting toward October and November."
The following is a breakdown of each event on the schedule.
Wyoming Invitational, Sept. 2, Laramie, Wyo.
Jacoby Golf Course will serve as the location for the meet, in which the Cowboys and Cowgirls finished second and third, respectively, last season.
"It's always nice to kick off the season with our home event," Cole said. "That gives us a gauge to see where we're at after three weeks of team training. Since it is an established route, it gives you a list to compare from year to year where your runners are at."
Woody Greeno Invitational, Sept. 17, Lincoln, Neb.
The Wyoming men's team won the team title at the Woody Greeno last season for the first time in school history, edging out Nebraska by one point.
"We return to the Woody Greeno meet, where our men won the team title, and the women had a good showing," Cole said. "It's a good cross country course and it gives us a big meet feel with 25-30 teams."
Rocky Mountain Shootout, Oct. 1, Boulder, Colo.
The meet will be hosted by the University of Colorado on the Buffalo Ranch Cross Country Course.
"It's a great atmosphere there with a really rugged course and great terrain," Cole said of the Shootout. "It's an opportunity to come see us compete against some of the best teams in the Rocky Mountain region."
Indiana State Pre-National Invitational, Oct. 16, Terre Haute, Ind.
This meet will serve as a preview for the NCAA National Championship, which will be hosted on the same course later in the season.
"If we have any aspirations of competing at the national championship, this will give us a preview of this well-established championship layout," Cole said. "It's also a good opportunity to run against other regions."
Mountain West Conference Championships, Oct. 29, Fort Collins, Colo.
The postseason action will begin just a short drive away from home for the Cowboys and Cowgirls, on the home course of their rival, the Colorado State Rams.
"It's nice, fair and flat and can be a fast course," Cole said. "Our goal is to be the top two to three teams in the championship."
NCAA Mountain Region Championships, Nov. 12, Provo, Utah
The Mountain Region Championships qualify the top two teams automatically to the NCAA National Championships. There also will be at-large teams selected following all of the regional competitions around the country to make up the field of 31 teams for the national championships. The top four individual who are not on any of the automatic or at-large teams also will qualify for the national championships.
"That's an opportunity to punch a ticket to the national championships," Cole said. "We have to have a really strong effort, a culmination of the hard work over the summer and fall. It comes down to having everyone contribute on the day to have a chance to compete."
The NCAA National Championships will be Nov. 21 in Terre Haute.