Cowboys Open Cross Country Season With First-Place Finish
Sept. 2, 2011
LARAMIE, Wyo. -
The Wyoming men's cross country program started off the season with a bang Friday in Laramie, finishing tied for first place in the Wyoming Invitational.
The Wyoming men had four runners finish in the top six, scoring 33 team points to tie with Colorado State for the top finish among the teams. Utah Valley was third with 60 points, followed by Northern Colorado with 129 points and Carleton College with 136.
Greg Miller was second overall with a time of 22:02.9 in the 4.25-mile race, just edging his mark from last year's event, which was 22:03. Miller's time was fifth-best in event history.
Sophomore Garrett Zans was the next finisher for the Cowboys, crossing the line in third place with a time of 22:04.2. That time is No. 7 in event history. Senior Nick Ekel (22:07.8) was fourth and junior Michael Banks (22:27.5) was sixth. Wyoming's fifth scorer was freshman Ashton Hebert, who finished 20th (23:24.3) in his first collegiate race.
"They committed to taking it out, and then Nick Ekel went right with them," Wyoming coach Randy Cole said of his top three finishers. "Mike Banks faded back, but he came on really well (at the end.) It was a good foursome right up there, running with the good CSU runners.
"I think they picked us up at the end. Our fifth runner was a little bit back, but Ashton will come on well as the year goes by. I thought it was a nice, solid effort."
As a team, the Cowgirls were third with 79 points, trailing Colorado State (15) and Utah Valley (70). Carleton College was fourth with 106 points, and Northern Colorado was fifth with 121 points.
The top finisher for the Cowgirls was Brooke Hughes, who was eighth overall (15:09.7) in the 2.5-mile race.
"That was probably her best race since she's been at Wyoming," Cole said of Hughes' performance. "She got up there and committed and hung tough. That's what you're looking for. She did a good job, she's had a good summer training."
Hughes was followed by Abi Bever, who made her debut for Wyoming after transferring from Black Hills State. Bever finished 15th with a time of 15:38. Emily Swigart finished 21st, 16:00.9; Devon England was 27th, 16:12.1; and Jessica Lemaster rounded out the scoring with a 28th-place finish (16:12.8.)
"That was probably her best race since she's been at Wyoming," Cole said of Hughes' performance. "She got up there and committed and hung tough. That's what you're looking for. She's had a good summer of training."
The other Cowgirl runners were Danielle Grossman, who was 29th, 16:15.0 23; Felicia McAfee was 30th, 16:15.3; Andrea Klimowski was 32nd, 16:16.9; McKynzie Maher was 37th, 16:29.7; Kirsten McKen was 42nd, 16:51; Chelsea O'Brien was 47th, 17:10.6; Molly Lux was 49th, 17:26.1; Ashley Lane was 51st, 17:48.8; Courtney Madson was 53rd, 17:56.5; and Dannika West was 56th, 18:09.4.
The next event for the Cowboys and Cowgirls will be the Woody Greeno Invite on Sept. 17 in Lincoln, Neb.