October 31, 2009

Women Seventh, Men Ninth In First Hosting


GREELEY, Colo. - Hosting its first-ever Big Sky Conference Championship, the University of Northern Colorado women's cross country team finished seventh with 221 points, while the men's team was ninth with 273 points.

Northern Arizona won both the men's and women's team and individual titles. The Lumberjack men had all seven runners finish in the top 10 as David McNeill successfully defended his title, running a 24:35.76 over the 8K course.  The women's team scored 28 points en route to the championship as Veronica Pohl also successfully defended her crown from a year ago, posting a 5K course time of 19:04.70.

The Bears were led by Denise Kintzley on the women's side and Dylan Hedges in the men's race. Kintzley finished 31st with a time of 21:23.30, while Hedges ran a 28:23.91 to place 48th.

Seniors Kellie Callahan and Erin Apsey both also finished in the top 50, clocking times of 21:43.70 and 21:50.65 to place 40th and 45th, respectively. Sophomore Megan Horsch (52nd, 22:19.45) and junior Jacqueline Lomax (53rd, 22:23.05) rounded out the team scoring. Freshman Bridget Tiernan (56th, 22:28.20) and senior Rachel Forrest (58th, 22:45.20) also competed in the wet and muddy race.

Junior Danny Sojka finished just four spots behind Hedges, taking 52nd place in 28:39.96, while freshman Ben Wilson was 56th in 29:16.41. Freshman David McClelland (58th, 29:57.36), junior Joe Pummer (59th, 30:26.76) and junior Dan Larson (60th, 31:45.71) all finished consecutively to round out the men's scoring.

In the women's race, Weber State (64) finished second, Montana (66) was third, Sacramento State (99) fourth, Idaho State (120) fifth and Montana State (162) sixth to finish ahead of the Bears. Portland State (227) finished eighth and Eastern Washington was ninth with 276 points.

The Montana State men (68) were second, while Montana (76) was third, Weber State (91) fourth, Eastern Washington (144) fifth, Sacramento State (170) sixth, Idaho State (176) seventh and Portland State (226) eighth.

Several members of the Bears team will compete at the NCAA Mountain Regionals, hosted by the University of New Mexico in Albuquerque on November 14.