Cross Country Travels To Iowa State Memorial Classic

Oct. 11, 2000

Saturday, Oct. 14 - Iowa State Memorial Classic (NCAA Pre-Meet), Ames, Iowa
Men: 8:30 a.m. (MT), 10K, Women: 9:30 a.m. (MT), 6K

This Week: The Arizona State cross country squads will face their toughest test of the season thus far, as the 14th-ranked women and the 16th-ranked men travel to Ames, Iowa for the 28th Annual Iowa State Memorial Cross Country Classic Saturday, Oct. 14. The men's 10,000-meter 'B' race will start at 7:30 a.m. Mountain Time, followed by the men's 'A' race at 8:30 a.m. (MT). The women's 6,000-meter 'A' race will begin at 9:30 a.m. (MT), while the 'B' race is scheduled for 10:15 a.m. This event is also known as the NCAA Pre-National meet, as Iowa State will host the NCAA Championships Mon., Nov. 20.

The Field: Racing in a championship-style atmosphere, the Sun Devils will meet men's and women's squads from over 50 Div. I cross country programs including nationally-ranked Arizona (No. 9 men, No. 15 women), Boston College (No. 10 women), Brown (No. 21 women), BYU (No. 3 women, No. 8 men), Colorado (No. 2 women, No. 3 men), Colorado State (No. 11 men, No. 17 women), Duke (No. 23 women, No. 25 men), Georgetown (No. 7 men and women), Indiana (No. 22 men), Marquette (No. 20 women), Northern Arizona (No. 10 men, No. 24 women), Oregon (No. 18 men, No. 22 women), South Florida (No. 21 men, No. 25 women), and Stanford (No. 1 men and women).

Sun Devils In the Polls: The ASU women are ranked 14th for the second straight week by the FinishLynx Women's Cross Country Poll, while the ASU men fell from 14th to 16th in this week's MONDO Men's Cross Country Top-25.

Last Time Out: The Arizona State women and the Northern Arizona men's 'B' team captured titles at the 15th annual ASU Cross Country Invitational at Freestone Park in Gilbert, Ariz. Friday, Oct. 6. UTEP's Anita Looper won the women's 5,000-meter race in 18:41, yet the Sun Devil women dominated the pack placing all five of their runners in the top-11. Jen Hurbis led the ASU women reserves, placing third (19:26), while her teammates were not far behind. Megan Laib (20:07.3), Jen Bridgeman (20:17.8), Tiela Cairns (20:20) and Penny Jacobson (20:24.3) placed eighth through 11th. Northern Arizona's Jinny Hanifan placed second (19:16.5) to round out the top three. UTEP claimed its second individual title as Dario Espinoza won the men's 8,000-meter race in 25:44.3. Central Arizona College's Kalid Abdalah (25:51.4) and Nicholas Musyoki from Dine College (25:51.9) finished neck and neck for second and third place. ASU's Phillip Prince led the Sun Devil reserve men, who finished third, with a ninth place finish (26:37.0).

Sharing the Wealth: Whether it be the first-string corps, or the Sun Devil 'B' teams, ASU has been led by a different top individual finisher on both the men's and women's side in all four races thus far in 2000: UC Irvine Invitational - Juan Reyes (9th), Brianna Torres (1st), Roy Griak Invitational - Garrett Jensen (5th), Lisa Aguilera (2nd), Canyon West Classic - David Burke (6th), Candi Criscione (3rd), ASU Invitational - Phillip Prince (9th), Jen Hurbis (3rd).

Head Coach Walt Drenth: Walt Drenth, in his fifth year as Head Cross Country Coach at Arizona State University, has taken the Sun Devils to unprecedented heights. He was named the Pac-10's Coach of the year in 1999, after leading the Sun Devils to their best finish in school history. Under his tenure, ASU has posted the best Pac-10 finishes in school history (Women 2nd in 1999, Men 4th in �98 and �99) and the best regional finishes in school history (both finished 3rd last year). In addition, the men are made their first appearance in school history at the NCAA Championships in 1999 and finished 14th, while the women earned back-to-back berths to nationals, including a 12th-place finish in 1999. Drenth came to Tempe after spending the previous six years (1990-95) at the College of William & Mary and six years at Central Michigan (1985-90). He is a seven-time conference coach of the year and two-time District Coach of the Year and has led six squads to the NCAA Championships.

Remaining Schedule: Following this week's Pre-NCAA meet, ASU will return home to host the Arizona State Open Friday, Oct. 20 at Freestone Park in Gilbert in preparation for the championship season. First, ASU will travel to the Pac-10 Championships hosted by the University of Washington in Seattle Saturday, Oct. 28, followed by the NCAA Regional Championships at Fresno State Saturday, Nov. 11. The Sun Devils will then return to the site of this week's meet for the NCAA Championships hosted by Iowa State Monday, Nov. 20.

2000 Season Recap: With four meets under their belts, the Sun Devil harriers have turned in solid team and individual performances thus far in the 2000 cross country campaign. With the exception of the Roy Griak Invitational, Coach Drenth has rested many of his top runners in preparation for the championship season and even so, ASU has displayed some notable performances:

Men's Team

Date Event Place (out of) Pts. Top ASU Individual Rank
9/9 UC Irvine Invitational 3rd (9) 63 Juan Reyes, 9th (26:18.8) 11
9/23 Roy Griak Invitational (Minnesota) 6th (31) 190 Garrett Jensen, 5th (24:35) n/a
9/30 Canyon West Classic (Tempe) 'B' Team - 2nd (11) 61 David Burke, 6th (26:16.9) 12
10/6 ASU Invitational 'B' Team - 3rd (11) 97 Phillip Prince, 9th (26:37.0) 14

Women's Team

Date Event Place (out of) Pts. Top ASU Individual Rank
9/9 UC Irvine Invitational 4th (11) 86 Brianna Torres, 1st (18:30.2) 10
9/23 Roy Griak Invitational (Minnesota) 3rd (29) 140 Lisa Aguilera, 2nd (21:08) 7
9/30 Canyon West Classic (Tempe) 'B' Team - 2nd (7) 59 Candi Criscione, 7th (18:41.6) 12
10/6 ASU Invitational 'B' Team - 1st (9) 41 Jen Hurbis, 3rd (19:26.0) 14

Up Next: The Sun Devils will return home to host their second meet of the season, the first annual Arizona State Open held Friday, Oct. 20 at Freestone Park in Gilbert, Ariz.

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