Strong Showing for Cougar Runners at Arkansas
October 18, 1997
FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. -- Washington State's women brought home some hardware while the 12th-ranked men took a big step towards a shot at the NCAA Championships during the Chile Pepper Cross Country Invitational Saturday, Oct. 18.
Host Arkansas easily won both team titles. The Cougar women finished third with 86 points behind the Lady Razorbacks (42) and Weber State (57). WSU's men were fourth with 114 points, but finished ahead of 10th-ranked Oklahoma State which placed sixth with 129 points.
"Beating Oklahoma State was crucial," said WSU assistant coach Dr. Li Li. "It's a big burden off our shoulders. This gives us some leeway down the road for a bid to the national championships."
Cougar sophomore Bernard Lagat was in the hunt for the men's 10,000-meter title until he developed a sideache in the final 2,000 meters. He still finished third overall with a time of 29 minutes, 21 seconds. Ryan Wilson of Arkansas posted the winning time of 28:55.
The Cougar women, led by senior Kristin Ritzenthaler's tenth-place time of 17:31, pushed all five scorers across the finish line in a span of 40 seconds. Unattached runner Deena Dressin won the women's 5,000-meter race in 16:10.
"Our women are definitely making progress," Li said. "Once again we had good overall grouping."
The next competition for WSU's cross country squads will be the Pacific-10 Conference Championships held at Stanford, Calif., Nov. 1.
CHILE PEPPER CROSS COUNTRY FESTIVAL (Fayetteville, Ark., 10,000 meters) - Men's Results
CHILE PEPPER CROSS COUNTRY FESTIVAL (Fayetteville, Ark., 5,000 meters) -
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