PROVO -- The BYU men's and women's cross country teams opened the season strong by winning both team and individual titles in the Cross Country Triple Crown Saturday. Junior Dula Parkinson finished first in the men's four-mile race, crossing the line in 20:06.2, and senior Sharolyn Shields-Thayer paced the women with a 17:28.0 finish in the three-mile race.
On the men's side, the meet gave BYU a look at some of its upcoming competition, as the Cougars edged out No. 23 Weber State. The Wildcats were ranked ten places higher than BYU in the preseason polls, and they will be running in the NCAA Mountain Regional. Weber State seniors Joe Wilson and Jason Schoenfeld led for most of the race, but with under 400 meters to go Parkinson out-kicked the pair to take the win. Wilson (20:10.8) and Schoenfeld (20:12.0) finished in second and third place, respectively, follwed by BYU senior John Hedengren (20:12.7) and freshman Josh Rohatinsky (20:16.4). Weber then took the 6th and 8th positions, while BYU rounded out their top five with junior Ben Wynn in 7th and sophomore Andy Carman in 9th.
In their first competition since winning the 1999 National Championship, the No. 6 BYU women posted a solid team effort taking five of the first seven positions. After running together in the lead pack for the entire race, Shields-Thayer and sophomores Lindsey Thomsen (17:30.0) and Sarah Ellett (17:31.9) finished 1-2-3 for BYU. Washington senior Melinda Campbell (17:40.3) crossed the line in fourth place, and sophomore Kate Bradshaw (17:42.3) finished in sixth for the Huskies, but the race belonged to BYU. Reshirt freshmen Nan Evans (17:41.0) and Katie Martin (17:49.8) crossed the line in fifth and seventh to give the Cougars a team score of just 18.
On Friday, the BYU women travel to Charlotte, North Carolina to run in the Great American Festival, while the men will run in the Roy Griak Invitational in Minneapolis, Minnesota on Saturday.
University Men's 4 Mile
1. Dula Parkinson BYU 20:06.3
2. Joe Wilson Weber State 20:10.8
3. Jason Schoenfeld Weber State 20:12.0
4. John Hedengren BYU 20:12.7
5. Josh Rohatinsky BYU 20:16.4
6. Jeremy Tolman Weber State 20:18.6
7. Benjamin Wynn BYU 20:21.9
8. Joel Atwater Weber State 20:27.5
9. Andy Carman BYU 20:45.2
10. Mike Thatcher BYU 20:50.5
1. BYU 1, 4, 5, 7, 9 = 26
2. Weber State 2, 3, 6, 8,12 = 31
University Women's 3 Mile
1. Sharolyn Shields-Thayer BYU 17:28.0
2. Lindsey Thomsen BYU 17:30.0
3. Sarah Ellett BYU 17:31.9
4. Melinda Campbell Washington 17:40.3
5. Nan Evans BYU 17:41.0
6. Kate Bradshaw Washington 17:42.3
7. Katie Martin BYU 17:49.8
8. Melanie Steere BYU 17:53.1
9. Rebecca Bennion Weber State 17:54.4
10. Cynthia Losee Weber State 18:02.8
1. BYU 1, 2, 3, 5, 7 = 18
2. Washington 4, 6,11,16,17 = 54
3. Weber State 9,10,13,14,15 = 61