The Seattle University cross country team solidified the travel squad for next week's conference championships as it concluded the regular season Friday evening at the Beaver Classic, hosted by the Corvallis Running Project at Avery Park.
The Seattle University women were led by sophomore Amy Tolentino (Rancho Santa Margarita, Calif.), who finished in 50th place with a time of 24:05 over the six-kilometer course. Justine Bates (Arlington, Wash.) earned the second available spot on the travel squad by finishing in 53rd place in 24:10, just ahead of Kimberly Pugliese (Mililani, Hawaii) in 56th place with a time of 24:13.
Taylor de Laveaga (Gilbert, Ariz.) finished in 74th place with a time of 24:56, followed by Haley Kruell (Portland, Ore.) in 78th place in 25:21 and Mary Thompson (Simi Valley, Calif.) in 79th place with a time of 25:22. Meghan Manwill (Eugene, Ore.) rounded out the Redhawk contingent, finishing in 87th place in 26:06. As a team, the Redhawk women finished in ninth place with 245 points.
For the men on an eight-kilometer course, sophomore Collin Overbay (Spokane, Wash.) finished in 34th place with a time of 25:56, followed by Jeff Baklund (Auburn, Wash.) in 37th place in 26:02, allowing them to join the Redhawk men heading to the conference championships. Miles Hille (Woodinville, Wash.) crossed the finish line in 44th place with a time of 26:12, with freshman Chris Davis (Centennial, Colo.) putting together another solid performance, finishing in 51st place in 26:22.
Nathan McLaughlin (Puyallup, Wash.) finished in 59th place with a time of 26:36, and Kevin Kopetz (Derry, N.H.) finished in 63rd place with a time of 26:40. David Strand (Seattle, Wash.) finished in 93rd place in 27:46, and Colton Misono (Newcastle, Calif.), recovering from an injury, finished in 126th place in 29:23. The Seattle U men finished in sixth place with 165 points.
"There were some really gutsy performances today. Amy ran an incredibly tough race to earn a spot on the travel squad for conference. Miles also ran stronger than I've seen from him all season. Unfortunately it wasn't quite enough to get second on the team today, but I saw true determination in him," Seattle U head coach Trisha Steidl said.
The Seattle University runners who successfully qualified within the team will head to Ruston, La., for the Western Athletic Conference Championships next Saturday, Oct. 27, at Lincoln Parish Park. The women's race is scheduled to begin at 9 a.m. local time (7 a.m. Pacific time), with the men's race set to commence at 10 a.m. Central time (8 a.m. local time).
"We have a very solid team of men and women heading to the WAC meet next weekend. If everyone is healthy and fired up, we will have some great performances to start things off in our new conference," said Steidl.