Men Second, Women Fourth at Mountain West Championships
Oct. 29, 2011
FORT COLLINS, Colo. - Highlighted by junior Jeremy Drenckhahn's runner-up finish, the Air Force men's cross country team picked up a second-place team finish at the 2011 Mountain West Cross Country Championships on Saturday, Oct. 29, in Fort Collins, Colo. The women's team finished fourth in the team standings, behind junior Melissa Fuerst's ninth-place finish.
Drenckhahn ran the 8K route at Collindale Golf Course in 25:11.2 to finish second, edging out Colorado State's Spenser Lynass at the line by just 0:00.3. Drenckhahn's finish matched the Falcons' best-ever placement at the conference meet. The junior was one of two Falcons to place within the top five, as senior Jim Walmsley clocked a time of 25:24.9 to finish fifth.
Air Force also picked up a pair of top-15 finishes from junior Andrew Quallio and sophomore Isaiah Bragg. Quallio clocked a time of 25:38.0 to finish 12th, while Bragg posted a time of 25:44.8 to take 14th. Sophomore Gavin Owens rounded out the Falcons' scoring runners with a 21st-place time of 26:03.6.
Just 0:52.4 separated the five scoring runners for Air Force - the narrowest spread of the five teams.
Four additional Falcons ran today at the conference championships. Sophomore Charlie Perkins placed 25th with a time of 26:16.1, while junior Matt Bell finished 30th in 26:27.9. Sophomores Jake Hawkins and Dan Bailey finished 33rd and 42nd, respectively, as Hawkins clocked a time of 26:34.7 and Bailey crossed the finish line in 27:12.3.
Air Force finished second to New Mexico by just three points. The Lobos claimed their third consecutive title with 51 points, barely edging out the Falcons' 54-point total. Colorado State finished third with 68 points, while Boise State and Wyoming finished fourth (75 points) and fifth (85 points), respectively. TCU rounded out the conference finishes, tallying 190 points to take sixth.
On the women's side, Fuerst became just the second Air Force runner ever to finish within the top 10 of the Mountain West Conference Championships, as she completed the course in 21:21.9 to take ninth.
Classmate Jen Bremser placed 21st with a time of 22:16.6, while fellow junior Kate Kanetzky clocked a time of 22:35.4 to finish 27th. Senior Katie Carroll and junior Morgan Mosby placed 34th and 35th, with respective times of 22:49.6 and 22:52.8, to round of the Falcons' scoring finishers.
Four additional runners competed at the conference meet. Freshman Heather Connick clocked a 40th-place time of 23:10.7, while sophomore Annette Eichenberger finished 43rd with a time of 23:31.1. Classmate Adrianna Dong clocked in at 23:44.1 to take 49th and sophomore Carley Gross rounded out the Falcons' contingent with a 51st-place time of 23:53.7.
With four runners finishing within the top seven, New Mexico won its fourth straight title with 30 points. Colorado State finished second with 53 points, while Boise State took third with 88 points. Air Force amassed 122 points to take fourth, while Wyoming took fifth with 133 points. TCU (sixth, 149 points), UNLV (seventh, 179 points) and San Diego State (eighth, 218 points) rounded out the eight-team meet.
Air Force returns to action on Saturday, Nov. 12, for the NCAA Mountain Region Championships in Orem, Utah.