The men's team captured a first-place finish with a nearly perfect 16 points to win the 2009 BYU Autumn Classic. (Photo by Mark Philbrick/BYU Photo)
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PROVO -- On a warm overcast morning at the Clarence F. Robison Track, the BYU men’s and women’s cross country teams ran away with team titles at the 2009 BYU Autumn Classic.
The women’s team earned the victory with 34 points overall to overcome Idaho State (41) and UCLA (47) in a 5K race. Leading the way for the Cougars was sophomore Katy Andrews, who finished second overall at 18:25.6 behind UCLA’s Shannon Murakami (17:59).
Rachel Lange (4), Lacey Cramer (6), Sarah Yingling (9) and Katie Palmer (14) rounded up the top five slots to provide the total of 34 points. Freshman Nicole Nielsen, running unattached for BYU, came in tenth place overall to account for Palmer’s 14th-place finish giving the Cougars 13 points rather than 14.
“I liked our team strategy to run as a pack,” said BYU women’s head coach Patrick Shane. “Hats off to Katy who ran a great race individually. I like our team’s depth – they went out and got the job done and they’ve trained very well in the off-season to prepare for this season. We ran well together even without some of our top runners and I think we are going to have a great year.”
Sarah Edwards finished one second behind Palmer to finish as BYU’s sixth runner, while Ashlee Thomas, Sarah Hansen and Nichole Clark followed closely behind. Several freshmen and sophomore Stephanie Jensen ran unattached, enhancing the overall team effort with great finishes.
“We planned to run the first mile conservatively and run together as a pack,” Andrews said. “After awhile we found our individual battles to fight and I thought we did great. We’re feeling confident, building strong relationships with each other and learning with our individual successes.”
The men’s team performed equally well as the Cougars came in first with a nearly perfect 16 points to beat UCLA (48), Idaho State (84) and San Bernardino Valley College (106). Sophomore Miles Batty came in first place overall with a time of 19:38.3 as the Cougars claimed four of the top five spots and seven of the top 10.
Seniors Brandon Hebbert, Ryan Merriman and Richard Nelson finished within 20 seconds of Batty to provide the remaining points for the team. Alden Bahr, Nate Ogden, and Tommy Gruenewald finished in the top 10 with Travis Fuller (unattached), Reagan Frey, Jon Kotter, Jonathan Nelson (unattached) and Dylan Shawhan in close pursuit. Several other Cougars ran unattached in the 4-mile event.
“I’m very please with our depth,” said BYU men’s head coach Ed Eyestone. “We built up a pretty good lead after a few miles and to have five runners finish within 30 seconds of each other as the top runners proved to be a solid performance overall. That was a good UCLA team that we beat.”
2009 BYU Autumn Classic
2 K. Andrews 18:25.6 1 M. Batty 19:38.3
4 R. Lange 18:32.4 2 B. Hebbert 19:44.3
6 L. Cramer 18:37.8 3 R. Merriman 19:52.9
9 S. Yingling 18:46.3 4 R. Nelson 19:58.3
14 K. Palmer 19:08.2 6 A. Bahr 20:03.3
15 S. Edwards 19:09.2 7 N. Ogden 20:15.5
20 A. Thomas 19:24.3 9 T. Gruenewald 20:16.9
26 S. Frey 19:40.8 13 R. Frey 20:27.5
29 N. Clark 19:59.2 14 J. Kotter 20:28.3
16 D. Shawhan 20:38.9
39 J. Adams 21:42.3
Unattached BYU runners
10 N. Nielsen 18:46.6 11 T. Fuller 20:24.2
18 L. Sowards 19:17.0 15 J. Nelson 20:30.2
19 M. Laurent 19:19.7 19 A. Fletcher 20:51.6
21 K. Swanson 19:28.1 34 K. Wilcock 21:29.7
23 L. Wynn 19:33.4 42 J. Cosby 21:47.9
25 M. Callister 19:37.9 43 J. Rohatinsky 21:48.7
28 S. Jensen 19:58.3 65 N. Fletcher 23:44.9
30 T. Kussee 20:08.7
31 K. Vidmar 20:13.6