South Dakota won both the men’s and women’s team titles. Amanda Vorthmann of Nebraska Omaha finished first on the women’s side running the course in 19:23. South Dakota’s Jeffrey Mettler led the men’s field with a time of 26:39.
The meet was also scored in double-dual formats. The Bluejay women lost to Nebraska Omaha (21-36), Nebraska-Lincoln (17-43) and South Dakota (16-47), while the Bluejay men fell in those formats to both Nebraska-Lincoln (15-47) and South Dakota (15-50).
The women were led by Courtney Sawle. The sophomore finished the 5k course 11th with a 20:13 clocking. Newcomer Emily Mauser posted the Jays second best time. The freshman from Denver finished 18th with a 20:53. Veteran Meagan Wilderson finished 21st overall. The junior posted a time of 21:06. Freshmen Emily Peterson (25th, 21:29) and Anna Weirick (33rd, 22:04) rounded out the top five for the Jays.
With six freshmen on this year’s women’s squad, fourth year head coach Chas Davis knows he has a very young team this season but that’s what will make this season an exciting one to watch. “With our top two that are back and looking good as ever, it’s going to make it tougher for our pack time because they are going to be so far ahead,” Davis said. “Our freshmen are going to make our fourth and fifth spots a lot better this year, we have a freshman rolling with our top two girls right now.”
The men were led by freshman Garrett Kenyon’s 14th place finish. The Colorado Springs native finished the 8k course in 28:57. Sophomore Drew Prescott finished just two spots behind Kenyon with a time of 29:07. The Jays third best time belonged to senior Mike Hitt. He finished 23rd overall with a 29:57. Rounding out the top five for the Jays were freshman Daniel Poston (27th, 30:38) and junior Danny Diaz (28th, 30:42).
For the men, Davis said the team pack time will be the most important factor in future races. “I’m expecting our top 4, 5, or 6 guys to really push each other this year because we might have a new number one each week,” Davis said. “If we had a clear number one at this point it’s not because he is so much better, but the others weren’t stepping up to the challenge and doing their job.”
The Jays return to action Saturday Sept. 15 at the Woody Greeno/Nebraska Invitational in Lincoln.