Sunday, September 26, 2010

RSU Cross Country Season Underway

Rogers State men’s and women’s cross country team opens season with a pair of challenging meets using their first race a building block.

The Hillcats competed at the Midwestern State Cross Country Stampede finishing seventh out of eight teams in Wichita Falls, Texas.
“It was a hard, rough experience. I think they were excited and it gives them some experience,” said Chris McCormick, RSU cross country coach. “They’ve got that first race under their belt and now they’ve got some real goals.”

Junior Caleb Clark led the Hillcat men finishing 11th out of approximately 80 runners, with a 6K time of 19:30.

“I was hoping to do a little better but the race went out a little faster than I thought,” said Clark. “Overall it was a good starter.”

Clark was followed by freshmen Brandon Payne who finished 36th with a time of 20:29 and Oscar Reyes finished 54th (21:38), both running personal best.

On the women’s side, the Hillcats launched their cross country careers.

Seniors Kendall Clement and Jessie Zingo were the top two runners for RSU, finishing side-by-side. Clement completed the 4K with a time of 17:36 placing 42nd and Zingo clocked in a time of 17:45 finishing 43rd out of approximately 80 runners.

“It was definitely a test of self discipline because you’re running with experienced runners, so you had to keep that in mind,” said Clement.

Other top runners for the Hillcats were sophomore Breana Harrison who completed the course in 19:48 and finished 61st, freshman Ashley Parent in 62nd (19:57).

After a two week layoff, the Hillcats were back on the trail competiting at the Missouri Southern Stampede in Joplin, Missouri with the men placing 24th and the women placing 34th.

The Hillcats battled through the hot and humid weather conditions taking on a traditional cross country course filled with rolling hills while trailing through fields and woods. Yet, RSU weren’t victim to the circumstances all managing to surpass their personal best times competing with over 300 runners.

“This one was tougher, but this one had a lot more runners in it, which makes you faster because you’ve got more people to push and pull you along," said McCormick.

Clark finished in 31st out of 311 runners with a time of 25:30 in the 8k race.Rounding out the top runners for the Hillcat men were Payne posting a time of 27:56 (157th) and Reyes with a 28:54 (190th).

Hillcat women experienced their first 5k race. Clement led the pack with a time of 21:42 landing her 206th out of 302 runners followed by Zingo with a time of 21:49 for the 214th slot.
Other top runners for the Hillcats were Harrison with a time of 23:48 and Ashlie Faucier with a 24:33.

RSU cross country will hit the trails again Saturday, Sept. 25 at the Oklahoma State Cowboy Jamboree in Stillwater, Oklahoma.

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