SACRAMENTO, Calif. - The Washington State men’s cross country team finished eighth and the women’s team finished 14th at the NCAA Division I West Regional Friday morning at Haggin Oaks Golf Complex in Sacramento, Calif.
In the fourth consecutive race this season, senior Andrew Gonzales led the Cougar men’s cross country team. He took 21st overall and finished the 10,000m course in 30 minutes and 16 seconds. Gonzales hung with the lead pack for the majority of the race. Todd Wakefield followed Gonzales with a 44th place finish in 30:45. Crossing the finish line behind Gonzales and Wakefield were Forrest Shaffer 53rd (30:56), John Whelan 75th (31:27), Lee George 81st (31:37), Jackson Haselnus 106th (32:02), and Conner Johnsen 112th (32:07). Oregon’s Edward Cheserek won the men’s race and finished in 29:35.
The WSU men’s team captured eighth overall with 269 points. Four of the teams that finished ahead of WSU were ranked in the USTFCCCA national poll released Nov. 5. The Cougars finished behind No. 6 Stanford (53), No. 4 Oregon (64), No. 10 Portland (92), Boise State (117), No. 28 Arizona State (184), UCLA (187), and Cal Poly (191). Cross-state rival Washington finished behind the Cougars in ninth place with 277 points.
“We got what we needed to get. We would have liked to get below eight, but we beat Washington which was one of our goals going into the race,” coach Tim Riley said. “It’s also special when our seniors run as well as they did today.”
On the women’s team, Ruby Roberts also led the Cougars in the fourth consecutive race of the season. She finished the 6,000m race in 20:02 and took 15th overall. Roberts held with the chase pack and passed multiple runners on the finishing stretch. Following Roberts were Abby Regan 52nd (20:46), CharLee Linton 79th (21:02), Courtney Zalud 106th (21:29), Kiah Condos 152nd (22:04), Abby Knight 194th (22:40), and Steffie Pavey 219th (23:57). Boise State’s Emma Bates took the win with a time of 19:11.
“I was happy with the day. Our women ran great,” Riley said. “Ruby ran great and I’m really happy with how Abby Regan, Courtney Zalud, and CharLee Linton ran. It was great to see Courtney Zalud go out with a bang in her last cross country race as a Cougar.”
The Cougar women’s team finished 14th with 401 points. Six of the teams ahead of the Cougars were ranked in the USTFCCCA national poll released Nov. 5. WSU finished behind No. 1 Arizona (84), No. 19 Stanford (94), No. 15 Oregon (120), No. 17 San Francisco (140), No. 12 Washington (162), No. 26 Arizona State (175), UC Davis (221), Cal Poly (259), Portland (284), Boise State (300), Loyola Marymount (307), UCLA (330), and California (353).
The 2013 Division I National Championships will be Nov. 23 in Terre Haute, Ind.