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By HPU Athletics, Tony Perez. September 10, 2014 - 2:45 pm
The Women’s and Men’s Cross Country Teams had its second race of the season in the vast wilderness of Fairbanks. The women’s team finished first overall, while the men’s team finished in a close third to the University of Alaska.
In the frigid Alaskan climate, Fiona McKenna once again led the shiver of Sharks to victory. McKenna ran an astonishing 22:50 on the difficult Alaskan course. The reining PacWest Runner of Year picked up the win, beating second place Alexa Lua from Cal State-Stanislaus by 28 seconds.
In today’s race McKenna was also joined by Jamie Neal (3rd), Marissa Kunsch (4th), Meghan Fairchild (6th), Allison Carone (12th), Evelina Mansson (13th) and Gabrielle Wisot (22nd). The rookies on the team, Fairchild and Carone, had excellent races for their first career 6k. Fairchild posted a time of 23:46 while Carone ran a time of 24:26.
In the men’s race, the Sharks finished a close third by two points to Alaska. Leading the way for the men’s team for the second week was senior Leandro Santillian. Santillian broke up the Stanislaus pack finishing third overall with a time of 26:25.
Joining Santillian for the Sharks was Jorge Mendez (10th), Cody Bartlett (11th), Ricky Ochsner (13th), Fermin Villagran (15th), Jorge Mendoza (18th), and Yeltsen Vasquez (20th). Ochsner had a great first career 8k running a time of 27:31 out kicking two runners from Alaska down the stretch.
“The women ran extremely well today, beating a top ranked team in the region. I am proud of the results and I am looking forward to the rest of the season. We weren’t so lucky with the men’s team. Many of them had bad days, but fortunately for us we have two months to work out the kinks,” commented Head Coach Jorge Medina.”
The Sharks will return home to compete at BYU-Hawaii on September 20th.