Men, Women Dominate Both Wolfpack Cross Country Invite
RALEIGH, N.C. - Even with several key performers running unattached, NC State's men and women had no trouble scoring perfect scores of 15 in the Wolfpack Invite, held Friday at the Wake Med Soccer Park's cross country course.
Fifth-year senior Fredy Torres officially was credited with winning the men's race, although a group of four runners all came across the finish line with identical times in the 5k race of 15:21. Freshman Ryan Hill, running unattached, junior John Martinez and senior Gavin Coombs also finished at 15:21. Unattached freshman Patrick Campbell came in fifth at 15:25, with redshirt-freshman Andrew North sixth at 15:37, and redshirt-freshman Greg Dame seventh at 15:39.
"It was really hot today, and that affected the athletes," Wolfpack head coach Rollie Geiger said. "Still, I was really happy with the way that Fredy Torres, Gavin Coombs and John Martinez ran. I thought the two true freshmen, Ryan Hill and Patrick Campbell, both ran really well. We want our guys to try and run as a group and that front group really did that. We still have some decisions to make about who might redshirt and who will run, and some of I think what I saw today will definitely help me make some of those decisions."
East Carolina was second with a score of 64, with Virginia Wesleyan (102), Francis Marion (128) and Gardner-Webb (138) rounding out the top five.
In the women's race, unattached junior Kara McKenna won by nine seconds over freshman Lauren Bishop. McKenna ran the 5k course in 18:07. Bishop finished in 18:!6. Former Wolfpack runner Angelina Blackmon, running unattached, was third, also at 16:16. Five NC State true freshmen were next across the finish line: Emily Pritt (18:31), Andie Cozzarelli (18:48), Caroline Kirby (19:00), Erika Alpeter (unattached, 19:05) and Tiayonna Blackmon (unattached, 19:24). Redshirt-freshman Amanda Burger (19:26) was ninth at 19:26, and sophomore Marika Walker was 10th at 19:30.
"Kara McKenna ran a great race," NC State women's coach Laurie Henes said. "And I was really pleased with the way some of the freshmen ran. Lauren Bishop, Emily Pritt and Andie Cozzarelli. Emily Pritt ran a better time today than she did in the same distance in high school on the track. That's very impressive. Caroline Kirby and Erika Alpeter ran well."
East Carolina finished second with 51 points, with Gardner-Webb (80), Virginia Wesleyan (128) and Winston-Salem State (144) rounding out the top five.