NEXT RACE: The races will be 2000 meters shorter and a day earlier than normal as the Pacific Lutheran cross country teams compete Friday at the Central Washington Invitational. The invitational will be held at Ellensburg Rotary Park in Ellensburg.
SHORTER RACES: Six days after opening their 2012 season with races measuring the normal 6000-meter length for women and 8000-meter length for men, the Lutes will run 2000 meters less this Friday. The women's 4000-meter run gets underway at 5 p.m., followed by the men's 6000-meter competition at 5:45 p.m. The forecast calls for temperatures in the mid to high 80s tomorrow afternoon in Ellensburg, which will provide a challenge for all of the competitors. "This will be an exciting event for both our women and men's squads as it will be shorter and faster," head coach Heather Kreier says. "This meet will verify where the speed is at from the summer work and where improvements need to be made as the season progresses." A trio of freshmen - Andy Jensen, Tara Glynn and Krystalynne Haskins - will compete for the first time this season.
LAST WEEK: Both PLU teams placed third in their respective three-team divisions at the Whitman Invitational held last Saturday in Walla Walla. On the men's side, Lewis-Clark State scored 18 points, followed by Whitman with 55 and PLU with 61. The host school won the women's competition with 31 points, followed by Lewis-Clark State with 39 and PLU with 62. Junior Alan DenAdel placed third in the men's division, finishing the 8000-meter course in 27:21.00. Senior Kolter Grigsby was PLU's second runner, placing eighth overall with a time of 27:52.72. In the women's 6000-meter race, PLU's top four finishers were all freshman. Amanda Seely and Amanda Wilson led the way, Seely placing sixth in 24:46.18 and Wilson getting eighth in 25:20.27. Lauren Knebel was 11th in 25:40.86, while Madison Guscott was 25th in 27:18.97. "The Whitman Invite was a great starting point for our new and young women's team," Kreier said. "Our top three women are in the arena of Whitman's top three and with a season to still improve, I am hopeful we will catch or even surpass this front powerhouse. Meanwhile, we will need our returners to step up their game and improve toward Madison Guscott. On the men's side, Alan and Kolter held off all the Whitman men. Jordan Steves was a pleasant surprise coming in third for our Lute men. However, our returning men, (Eric) Herde and (Kyle) Smith, need to be with Jordan. The men were six points behind, but I see a season ahead of improvement and the hopes of beating Whitman at the NWC Championships."
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