For the Cornell men’s and women’s cross country teams, this weekend’s races in Ames, Iowa could have been a glimpse of the future.
The Iowa State Memorial Cross Country Classic, held to commemorate the death of the Cyclones 1985 women’s team which had six members die in plane crash, serves as the pre-national race. Roughly 80-percent of the top-25 compete in the event.
For Cornell, the women’s squad took 31st in the event, while the men took 35th.
The women were lead by senior co-captain Meredith Freimer, who completed the 6,000-meter course in a time of 22:44, giving her the 112th spot in the event.
Freshman Jessica Parrott finished second for the team, in 160th-place overall. The team’s other co-captain, senior Kim Chatman, crossed the line at the 23:20 mark, good for 173rd.
Junior Halle Watson was just nine seconds and 13 spots behind Chatman, while sophomore Carlan Gray, the last runner to score points for the women, crossed at 23:35. Overall, the team had 825 points.
Freshman Stephanie Anderson finished at 25:28, and junior Lena Matthews was unable to complete the event.
“I really think it was an opportunity missed. I think we could have done very, very well, and we did not,” women’s coach Lou Duesing said.
He pointed to the fact that Brown finished 15th and Columbia took 18th, both teams with which the Red is able to compete on any day.
But Duesing was quick to add that this was just a minor misstep for the team.
“It does not in any way invalidate what they have done to this point and it will in no way determine what will happen,” he said, referring to the Heps, which will be run in two weeks.
“They need to take this and learn from it,” the coach said of his runners. “If anything it renewed their resolve to acquit themselves well [in the future].”
Duesing felt that his team may have been a little intimidated by the fact that it started next to defending national champion BYU, the school which also won the event. But he felt there were positives to take from the event.
“I think the fact Cornell was there says good things about the program. And the fact that we had bad races, across the board, says good things,” he added.
On the men’s side, junior Max King paced the squad, finishing the 10,000-meter race in 32:16, finishing in 83rd.
Sophomore Dan Dombrowski and senior co-captain Colin Moore finished in second and third for the Red respectively.
Junior Geoff Van Fleet crossed the line fourth for Cornell, in a time of 33:09, good for 196h overall. Wyeth Koppenhaver took the last scoring spot for the Red with a time of 33:29. The team had 799 points.
Colorado won the event with 64 points.
Junior Dan Meehan and freshman John Corley also traveled to the meet, finishing in times of 33:38 and 33:40 respectively.
Archived article by J.V. Anderton