Volkert wins Griak Invitational
Michael Bauer | sports editor
Adam Volkert won the men’s race to lead the Pittsburg State cross country team to a sixth-place finish at the Roy Griak Invitational.
Jessica Macy also did well at the meet in St. Paul, Minn.
Volkert crossed the finish line in a time of 25 minutes, 11 seconds in the 8-kilometer race.
“I was pleased with everyone’s race,” said Russ Jewett, head coach. “We had a race plan and everyone carried it out well.
Macy clocked in at 21 minutes 39 seconds in the 6-kilometer race, leading her team to an overall third place finish.
“It was great to see Jessica Macy do well with great competition and most of the other girls did equally well,” Jewett said. “I was pleased with that top three performance at the competition level.
The Gorillas as a team stepped up from last year’s competition in Minnesota where the women finished 10th and the men placed 16th.
“The sixth-place finish was a lot better than last year’s performance,” Jewett said.
But Jewett believes there is more to come from both sides.
“I still think we had some potential that we didn’t meet up to this weekend but it’s a process,” Jewett said. “I think we made some progress but we have some more to make.”
The Pitt State women compiled 146 points. Augustana College won the meet with 83 points while Minnesota Duluth finished second with 121 points.
Runa Falch, from Augustana College, won the women’s race in a time of 21 minutes, 34 seconds, finishing five seconds ahead of Macy.
Casey Epps was the second Pitt State runner, finishing 21st overall in 23 minutes and 29 seconds. Alex Moase placed 29th in 23 minutes and 37 seconds. Cate Dunn was a few seconds behind, finishing 37th in a time of 23 minutes, 40 seconds.
The Pitt State men finished with 240 points. Augustana College’s men’s side also won the meet with 53 points. Wisconsin-LaCrosse had 102 points to finish second while Central Missouri had 124 points to place third.
Lakehead University and UC-San Diego finished fourth and fifth, respectively.
Chris Wise was the second PSU runner, placing 44th in a time of 26 minutes, 36 seconds.
“We may have left a little to be done but we still have time to fix it,” Jewett said of his men’s team’s performance.
Collin Hubert was 59th overall in 26 minutes, 48 seconds and Ethan Silvosky finished 64th in a time of 26 minutes, 52 seconds. Austin Bogina finished 72nd in 26 minutes, 57 seconds,
“The men may be not perfect on the race plan but they were probably too aggressive,” Jewett said. “Many of them dropped a few places in the middle of the race but we need to work on staying tougher in the middle.”
The men’s race consisted of 44 National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Division II schools while the women’s race contained 33.
Next up for the Pitt State cross country teams will be a visit to Hays for the Fort Hays State Invitational on Saturday, Oct. 12.
It’ll be unfamiliar territory for the Gorillas as they will compete at the Fort Hays State Invitational for the first time in their collegiate careers.
Jewett says the meet is a great opportunity to compete against Fort Hays State before the conference championship and that it is something different for his team.
“Nobody (on the team) has been to this course before,” Jewett said.
It will be the final meet before the Mid-America Intercollegiate Athletic Association (MIAA) championship.
“It really sets us up for the conference championship in that it’s the last chance for some of these kids to earn their way into the top 10 and solidify their chances of competing at conference,” Jewett said.