Huskies Go Separate Ways This Weekend
Sept. 27, 2012
Head Coach Greg Metcalf held out many of the top returning women during Washington's season-opening Sundodger Invitational. Now the team will start to more closely resemble what the coach envisions as the lineup come November. All-American and NCAA track champion Katie Flood will make her season debut, racing for the first time since the U.S. Olympic Trials this summer. Also debuting will be veterans Lindsay Flanagan, Justine Johnson, and Liberty Miller, all of who have run at the past two NCAA Cross Country Championships.
The women are in Louisville in part to get a sneak peak at the E.P. 'Tom' Sawyer State Park course, which will host the NCAA Championships later this fall as nationals moves away from Terre Haute, Ind. for the first time in several years. There is a lot of racing to be done before qualifying for nationals, but should the Huskies return to the course this year they'll have some experience to fall back on, although Saturday's race will be a thousand meters shorter than NCAAs.
The gun goes off at 7:15 a.m. Pacific time and 10:15 a.m. locally. Many top teams are thinking along the same lines as UW, as the field for the Greater Louisville Classic is impressive. Eighth-ranked Vanderbilt will be on hand, as will No. 10 Arkansas, No. 12 Arizona, No. 14 Michigan State, No. 17 Penn State, and No. 29 Wisconsin. The Huskies have held the No. 1 ranking since the first regular season ranking of the year, and currently hold 10 of the 12 first place votes.
The Husky men are looking to build off a nice opening Sundodger win. They will head to the Springfield Country Club course to race 8k at the Bill Dellinger Invitational, Oregon's biggest annual home meet. The race gets underway at 11:15 a.m. Pacific time.
The men will sport largely the same group that ran at the Sundodger. Joey Bywater will look to lead the way once again after getting the victory at Lincoln Park two weeks ago. Along with the host Oregon Ducks, ranked 23rd on the men's side, the Huskies will get to see how they stack up early against an early season title hopeful in No. 3 BYU. Other West Region teams on hand include Gonzaga, Sacramento State, UC Riverside, Idaho, and Seattle U.