Air Force to Compete in NCAA Mountain Region Cross Country Championships
Nov. 13, 2003
The Air Force Academy cross country teams will compete in the NCAA Mountain Region Cross Country Championship at Schneiter's Riverside Golf Course in Riverdale, Utah, Nov. 15. The men's 10K begins at 11 a.m. followed by the women's 6K at 12:15 (Mountain). Weber State is the host school.
The Falcons are ranked eighth in the NCAA U.S. Cross Country Coaches Association national poll after winning the Mountain West Conference title. Eighth is the highest the Academy's men's cross country teams have been ranked.
Ben Payne was the Falcons' top finisher in the 2002 region meet, finishing 11th with a time of 30:40. Chris Acs finished with a time of 30:53 (25th). Payne and Acs were all-region in 2002. Brian Dumm, who was one of the team's top seven finishers in 2003, should also be one of the top finishers on Saturday. The three earned all-conference honors at the 2003 MWC Championship along with Mark Walter, Abe Wengel and Nick Wilson. Kalib Wilkenson and Jeff Gosselin round out the Falcons' team this weekend.
"Both teams have competed very well all year and the region meet will be another good race for us. Our men have enough at-large points to advance to the NCAA meet (Nov. 24) as long as we finish in the top five---so that's our number one objective," Coach Mark Stanforth.
In 2002, the women's team finished sixth in the region and will be making a push to finish in the top 10 again this season. Anne Chumlea, Vivien Aspden, Ashley Culp and Lindsey Grose are the women's runners to watch this Saturday. Lindsey Grose was the Academy's top runner in the women's race at the Mountain West Conference meet. Ashley Snyder, Kelly McPherson, Beth Catherwood and Andrea Pinchak will join the group at regionals.
"The women finished sixth last year, our highest finish ever, and we'd like to equal that. It will be tough but we're going to give it a shot," Stanforth said.
Air Force Open (Nov 8): AFA runner Ilea Eskildsen won the women's three-mile race with a time of 19:18, Nov. 8. Crystal Grijalva finished in 17th-place with a time of 21:24. The pair was the only Air Force women to race against Northern Colorado and Colorado in the non-scoring meet. In the men's four-mile, Kyle Davidson was the Falcons' top finisher. Davidson finished the race in 22:00 and was the fourth runner in. First-place went to an unattached runner Pete Janson (21:40), CU runner Matt McCue finished second (21:50) and Matt Pickerello, unattached, followed with a time of 21:53.
Air Force Open Finishers: Other AFA finishers were Matt Hellier (8th/22:19), Jason Beck (10th/22:42), Nathan Franz (11th/22:54), Eddie Hildebrand (12th/22:58), Chris Gausepohl (13th/22:59), Rich Elmore (15th/23:06), Erik Goff (16th/23:09) and Derek Storbeck (17th/23:17).