The George Kyte Classic is held at one of NAU Cross Country's favorite training locations, Buffalo Park
On Saturday the Lumberjack Cross Country team held its annual home meet at Buffalo Park, the George Kyte Classic. This is the first opportunity for the new freshmen to show they have what it takes, and for the returners to show that they have put the work in over the summer. George Kyte always has a very exciting atmosphere as everyone anticipates the beginning of the next chapter of NAU Cross Country.
The women got the season started with their 5km race. Senior Rochelle Kanuho led the team to a 3rd place behind University of Arizona and Arizona State with her 6th place finish in 17:48.2. Freshman Lauren Justus finished 10th in 18:11.4, senior Haley Lawrence finished 19th in 18:44.0, senior Lisette Michael finished 24th in 19:12.6 (34 seconds faster than last year), and freshman Kerri Lenihan rounded out the scoring finishing 26th in 19:22.5.
The women gather before the start of the George Kyte Classic
All five scorers were faster than last year’s fastest runner on the team. Look for a different womens team to show up in 2011.
Tim Freriks leads the team with a 2nd place finish
Next up was the mens 8km race. Arizona State brought a very strong team up this year and won the meet by four points, 26-30. After running the first few miles as a pack, junior Tim Freriks pulled ahead from teammates Bahlbi Gebreyohanns (sophomore) and Matt Coloe (senior) and led NAU with a 2nd place finish in 25:55.9 (47 seconds faster than last year). Gebreyohanns finished in 4th in 26:22.6 (1:22 faster than last year) and Coloe was 6th in 26:28.6. Next up for the Lumberjacks was freshman Caleb Hoover finishing in 7th in 26:32.1, the fastest time by an NAU true freshman since Diego Estrada in 2008. Rounding out the scoring was red shirt freshman Cody Reed, finishing 12th in 27:10.8 (1:05 faster than last year).
Next up for the team is a solid month of training that, as Coach Heins put it, “won’t be glamorous.” The next meet will be in Tucson on the 16th at the Dave Murray Invitational. Some of the team will be training through that meet to prepare for the first big meet of the year, the Cowboy Jamboree in Stillwater, Oklahoma.
Official NAU Athletics Recap – Photos