The Metro men’s and women’s cross country teams opened the 2010 season at the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs Rust Buster Sept. 11 in Colorado Springs.
The women competed in a 4K race while the men ran a 6K. Both finished strong in the season-opener, although no team scores were kept.
On the men’s side, four Roadrunners placed in the top-10 out of 85 finishers. Junior Carl Arnold III took second place with a time of 19:13, while fellow junior Shawn Lindbom finished fourth at 19:29. Senior Zach Mares came in sixth at 19:39.13 and junior Eiger Erickson right behind him in seventh at 19:39.74.
“Our men’s team is very versatile this year,” Arnold said. “Any one of our top-5 could be the No. 1. This week it was me, but next week it could be one of the other guys.”
For the women, junior Xenia Flores took medalist honors and placed first out of 56 runners with a time of 15:11.
“I really wanted to win the race, so I’m happy with the way I ran,” said Flores, a preseason all-Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference pick.
Freshman Vicky VanAlstine–Tauer placed fifth, finishing in 15:46. The other women rounding off the teams’ top-5 were sophomore Julia Hernandez in 26th place at 16:37, freshman Terissa Angell in 38th place at 18:33 and junior Lily Bresee in 40th place at 18:35. Junior Kerry Allen and sophomore Judith Chavez, two of Metro’s top runners, rested due to minor injuries.
“We trained hard all the way up until race day,” Arnold said. “My legs and body were fatigued but all the conditioning we did helped me to do as well as I did.”
Metro competed against two of their RMAC rivals at the Rust Buster — UCCS and Colorado State University at Pueblo — along with a few other teams from outside their conference.
Absent from the meet were some of Metro’s biggest competitors, Adams State, Western State and Mines. The Roadrunners will face-off against those teams for the first time this season at the University of Colorado Rocky Mountain Shootout.
In the RMAC pre-season poll, Metro was ranked fourth in the conference on both the men’s and women’s sides. The team qualified for the NCAA Championships in 2009 and aim to do the same in 2010.
This is John Supsic’s first cross-country season as head coach at Metro. As assistant coach last season, he helped lead both teams to the NCAA Championships and should be able to continue that trend with the men’s and women’s teams this season.
Metro continues its season Oct. 2 as they head to the CU Rocky Mountain Shootout in Boulder.