September 6, 2002
University of Idaho Invite
Pretty good conditions to run in this day. A little windy, but when isn't it in Moscow. Good fields and good competition with four Division I schools in attendance (Idaho, Washington State, Portland State and Gonzaga) along with Clackamas Community College, Whitworth and LCSC.
Results are hard to report because there were multiple errors in the women's race as reported on Idaho's web page. However, on the women's side Tausha Kuzmic led the warriors finishing in 15:22 over the grueling 4K course. She was followed closely behind by a hoard of other warriors led by Junior Lisa Paxton (15:53), Lacey Knowlton (15:57), Katie Moser (16:20), Emma Linehan (16:21), Pam Houston (16:38), Erica Madison (16:48), Lisa Panian (17:05) and Hillary Buettner (17:36). The warriors were without one of their top 5 runners, Lauren Wright, who is currently recovering from an illness, but should be full speed this next week.
The women's results were very exciting considering that the first five this year were 1:52 faster than the top 5 from a year ago in a race that started out very slow this year as well as missing Lauren. In addition, the team has not started any speed work yet, unlike a year ago, so we should continue to see some improvements as the season progresses. Our star of the day was Lacey Knowlton-Way, who in her first ever cross country race was the third finisher for the warriors. Quite a competitor. From here on out Coach Collins will always tell her that she only has 2 minutes to go, whether she does or not, based on the way she finished.
The Men also had a great day finishing with a team time of 1:37 faster than a year ago as well as the fact that the #7 runner this year was faster than our 4th from last season. Leading the way for the warriors over the 4-mile course were the four upper classman (Joe Donnellon--21:08, Chris Patterson--21:21, Jeff Collins--22:08, and Calvin Sphuler--22:10). Rounding it out for the warriors were Eli McCann (22:26), Lance Nebeker (22:47), Shane Pitcher (22:53) and Nick Niemeyer (23:07).
Encouraging for the men, in addition to the team time improvements, were that this was the first races back for Calvin and Shane after extended hiatuses from school and running. They will continue to improve as their bodies and minds get back into racing form. Furthermore, freshman Eli and Lance got introduced to the toughest course they may ever face and came through quite well. The men are currently ranked #18 in the country. This race will definitely NOT hurt their rating, and depending on how other teams ran, may help them to move up in the polls.
The next race for the warriors is in Seattle at Lincoln Park in University of Washington's Sundodger meet on September 21. Next weekend the warriors are hosting a fundraising event (Duathlon (run/bike/run) and fun run). If you would like to participate, contact coach Collins at 208-792-2308.
In addition, the teams are preparing for their annual hill pledge run that will take place on December 9th. If you would like to make a pledge in the name of a warrior runner for the 10 miles they will run up the old spiral highway (2000' of climbing) give coach a call.