Sept. 29, 2012
(Cover photo courtesy of Jeff Reinking)
LOUISVILLE, Ky. - Still not quite at full strength, the Husky women's cross country team was still impressive today at the Greater Louisville Classic, and will look to return to the same course in November in peak shape for nationals. Today, at the E.P. 'Tom' Sawyer State Park course, the top-ranked Huskies took second against a strong field featuring six ranked teams.
Washington had its entire top-five finish in the top-25 of a field that had more than 250 runners. The Huskies totaled 80 points, which was just behind 12th-ranked Arizona, which scored 71. Washington was well ahead of the rest of the field, as 14th-ranked Michigan State and 10th-ranked Arkansas tied for third with 135 points, No. 17 Penn State was fifth with 161, No. 8 Vanderbilt was sixth with 178, and No. 29 Wisconsin was seventh with 205.
Leading the Dawgs over the 5,000-meter course was junior Katie Flood, who made her season debut and placed third in 16-minutes, 55-seconds. Arizona's Elvin Kibet won the race in 16:51.
Senior Lindsay Flanagan made her season debut as well with a ninth-place finish in 17:02. Washington capped its scoring as Libery Miller, Kayla Evans, and Justine Johnson all crossed within a second of each other. Miller and Johnson were running for the first time this fall while Evans continues her excellent comeback season. Miller was 21st in 17:15, and Evans and Johnson were 23rd and 24th, respectively, in 17:16.
The Husky men's team had a tougher day closer to home in Springfield, Ore. where they ran in the Bill Dellinger Invitational, hosted by the Ducks at the Springfield Country Club. Washington finished fourth in the 10 team field, as third-ranked BYU earned the win with 32 points, followed by 23rd-ranked Oregon which had 49 points. Southern Utah edged Washington for third, scoring 111 points while UW had 114.
Senior Joey Bywater was up front with the leaders throughout the 8,000-meter course. The Sundodger Invite champion wound up eighth overall in a time of 23:57. Oregon's Trevor Dunbar closed for the win in 23:38.
Sophomore Aaron Beattie had a nice run, finishing 23rd overall in 24:27. Junior Bryan Tibaduiza turned in perhaps the best run of his Husky career as he was the third UW finisher, placing 28th in 24:30. Senior Rob Webster Jr. was 33rd in 24:37 and junior Taylor Carlson rounded out the top-five in 41st-place, clocking 24:49. Michael Miller (58th) was the sixth Husky and Angelo Comeaux got into the top-seven with a 66th-place finish, while Kyle Rae was 65th running unattached.
Also of major note to Husky fans was one lone Dawg in the women's invitational race at the Dellinger. Christine Babcock, who only has track eligibility remaining, turned in another outstanding cross country race competing unattached. Coming off a victory at the Sundodger two weeks ago, Babcock was second overall in the women's 5k, running 16:32 to finish ahead of all but one member of the third-ranked Oregon women's team. The winner was Oregon senior Alexi Pappas, who ran 16:23. After Babcock crossed, it was a full 27 more seconds back to third-place. The three-time All-American is looking in great shape with 2013 just a few months away.
The men's and women's teams will have a couple more weeks of training and then join forces again to head to the Wisconsin adidas Invitational on Oct. 12.