Kansas Cross Country to be Tested at Pre-Nationals this Weekend

Meet Notes

Meet Preview
ISU Pre-National Invitational

Setting the Scene
Date Saturday, Oct. 17, 2013
Location Tarre Haute, Ind.
Host Indiana State University
Course LaVern Gibson Course
Start Times Men – 11 a.m.
Women – 11:40 p.m.


Men: 8K | Women: 6K


Ranked Teams Competing
Men Women
#1 Oklahoma State #2 Florida State
#2 Colorado #5 Georgetown
#4 Oregon #6 Oregon
#9 Tulsa #11 Stanford
#12 Indiana #12 Colorado
#18 Iona #14 Michigan
#19 Boise State #16 Virginia
#29 Stanford #18 Villanova
#19 Oklahoma State
#21 William & Mary
#23 Princeton
#27 Penn State

LAWRENCE, Kan. – After strong outings in their first two meets of the year, the Kansas cross country teams will travel to Terre Haute, Ind., on Saturday, Oct. 19 to compete in the 2013 Indiana State Pre-Nationals Invitational. The Jayhawks will face their largest field and toughest competition thus far in the season, as 103 teams, including 20 of the nation’s top-30 teams on the men’s and women’s sides, are scheduled to compete.
In order to qualify for the NCAA Championships and have a chance at that National title, teams must gain the necessary points to get into the meet late into the fall. During the season, several large, competitive meets fill each teams schedule, but few larger than the meet that takes place in the same city as the National Championships.
The men’s race is sure to be a competitive one with four top-ten teams slated to compete, including KU’s Big 12 rival, No. 1-ranked Oklahoma State. The race will give the Jayhawks a good litmus test as to where they stand midway through this 2013 campaign, especially as Kansas will face almost all the teams they will see in the meets leading up to the NCAA Championships.
The Jayhawk men’s team will be led by senior Josh Munsch who paced the team to a first-place finish two weeks ago at the Rim Rock Classic, also going on to claim his first collegiate individual title. Others expected to join Munsch at the top of the men’s pack are junior Reid Buchanan, Evan Landes and James Wilson and freshman Tyler Yunk.
Other runners hoping to score for the KU men’s team will be juniors Conner Day, Eric Lightfoot, Brendan Soucie, as well as freshman James Hampton, Alexandre Lavigne, Daniel Koech and Brandon Messerly.
The KU women’s team will be led by sophomore Hannah Richardson and junior Natalie Becker, who each have spent large amounts of time at the front of the women’s pack over throughout their careers. The women’s team’s success, however, will be dependent on the collective pack which will include a young, but talented group of underclassmen.
Freshman Malika and Nashia Baker posted impressive times in their first 6K at the Rim Rock Classic on Oct. 5, while Jennifer Angles was the top Jayhawk finisher in the first meet of the season, taking the runner-up finish at the Bob Timmons Classic. Those three has shown there metal in the year’s early meets and hope to continue the strong start to their careers Saturday in the largest meet they have seen to date.
Other women to watch at the LaVern Gibson Championship Course are junior Hayley Francis and freshmen Courtney Coppinger, Rachael Simon and Kelli McKenna.
Saturday’s event will give the Jayhawks their first test against a large and harshly competitive field this season. The coaches are hoping the veteran runners on both teams will be able to use their valuable experience from meets of this caliber in previous years, which they will apply to the meet in Terre Haute this weekend.
The men’s 8K is set to begin at 11 a.m., while the women’s 6k will kick-off at 11:40 a.m. Log on to KUAthletics.com for complete results and a recap of the day’s events.
The Jayhawks have two weeks off to prepare the Big 12 Championships, which take place on Nov. 2 in Waco, Texas. The men will kick off the event with their 8K race, which is set to start at 10 a.m., while the women’s 6K will begin at 11a.m.
KUAthletics.com: The official online source for Kansas Athletics, Williams Education Fund contributions, tickets, merchandise, multimedia, photos and much, much more.