Stephan Shay sprinted for the lead at the end of the race to lead BYU to a perfect score.
PROVO (Sat. Sept. 6, 2008) - It was a strong start for the BYU cross country team as both the men’s and women’s team finished first at the BYU Autumn Classic Saturday morning.
BYU’s Stephan Shay finished first overall in the men’s four mile with a time of 21:00.2, barely beating out Jimmy Grabow (21:00.3) from San Bernardino Valley College, who ran unattached, leading the Cougars to their first perfect score since 2004.
“Anytime you have a perfect score at a meet, you come out happy,” said men’s head coach Ed Eyestone. “I was impressed with Stephan’s performance and the way Brandon Hebbert stayed on top for the majority of the race; that’s one of the harder things to do and he did a great job keeping up the intensity.”
Closing in the sweep were Hebbert (21:03.4) in second, Richard Nelson (21:06.2) in third, Kyle Perry (21:10.9) in fourth and Tommy Gruenwald (21:20.3) to finish it off in fifth.
As the first race of the season, the men were able to get a better feel of how they run together as a team and how to feed of each other.
“We wanted to sweep the race,” said Shay. “I was really happy with the finish of the team. I have to give credit to Brandon; he stayed ahead practically the entire race and that is hard to do.”
Coming in behind BYU’s perfect score of 15 were Utah State (59 points), Nebraska (87 points), Utah Valley (105 points), BYU Alumni (136 points), San Bernardino Valley College (152 points), Idaho State (177 points) and Wildcat TC (243).
The BYU women’s team also came out on top, capturing the win with 35 points in the 5K and getting a chance to see what its young team is capable of accomplishing.
“Today was a very good performance,” said BYU women’s head coach Patrick Shane, “both individually and as a team. The first race of the season you never know what to expect, but these girls trained really hard at camp, and this summer, and coming here today shows that they know how to race.”
It was an incredible opener for sophomore Anna Sperry who came out as the top Cougar with a time of 19:42.7 for a third place finish.
“The key to my finish today was having a good summer,” said Sperry. “I worked with my old high school team and trying to get them motivated really got me motivated and focused. Everything I was trying to help them with just kind of played back to me.”
Tallying second for the Cougars was junior Angela Wagner (19:44.7) for a fourth place finish. After being home in Africa for a while this summer, finally being back and running with her team was exactly what she needed to get back into the swing of things.
“It’s hard to keep motivated in your training sometimes without having your teammates right there to keep you going, “ said Wagner. “That last lap I was just holding on for dear life, breaking the course into sections to help make it a little easier to keep focused. It was great to hear everybody cheering on the side of the track and now I see where I can improve to come back stronger in the next race.”
Coming in third for the Cougars was freshman Katy Andrews (19:55.4) followed by Stacy Slight (20:02.1) who finished eighth overall.
Following BYU were Nebraska (51 points), Runner's Corner (78 points), USU (79 points), Idaho State (118 points) and UVU (158 points).
Now with the first meet of the season underway, the men’s team will hit the road this week and head to San Diego to compete in the Aztec Invitational, Sept. 13, while the women have to wait a week until their next meet at the Bob Firman Invitational Sept. 20.
BYU Autumn Classic, Sept. 6, 2008
Campus Cross Country Course, Provo, Utah
Men's Four Mile
1. BYU, 15
2. Utah State, 59
3. Nebraska, 87
4. Utah Valley Univ., 105
5. BYU Alumni, 136
6. San Bernardino Valley College, 152
7. Idaho State, 177
8. Wildcat TC, 243
1. Stephan Shay, BYU, 21:00.2
2. Jimmy Grabow, Unattached, 21:00.3
3. Brandon Hebbert, BYU, 21:03.4
4. Richard Nelson, BYU, 21:06.2
5. Kyle Perry, BYU, 21:10.9
6. Tommy Gruenwald, BYU, 21:20.3
7. Ben Kessen, Utah State, 21:23.8
8. Ryan Merriman, BYU, 21:30.4
9. Jacob Gustafsson, BYU, 21:31.8
10. Nate Ogden, BYU, 21:35.8
1. BYU, 35
2. Nebraska, 51
3. Runner's Corner, 78
4. Utah State, 79
5. Idaho State, 118
6. Utah Valley Univ., 158
1. Lara Crofford, Nebraska, 19:10.9
2. Rachel Carrizales, Nebraska, 19:28.2
3. Anna Sperry, BYU, 19:41.7
4. Angela Wagner, BYU, 19:44.7
5. MaryAnn Schauerhamer, Runner's Corner, 19:47.8
6. Katie Andrews, BYU, 19:55.4
7. Sarah Ingebretsen, Runner's Corner, 19:58.8
8. Stacy Slight, BYU, 20:02.1
9. Jessie Chugg, Utah State, 20:03.5
10. Caroline Berry, Utah State, 20:04.3