Cats to Compete at Cowboy Jamboree

MANHATTAN, Kan. Kansas State’s men’s and women’s cross country teams will compete in the nation’s oldest consecutive cross country event at the 72nd Cowboy Jamboree, Saturday Oct. 4, hosted by Oklahoma State University. The women will run a 6K race at 9:10 a.m. followed by the men’s 8K race at 9:45, in Stillwater, Okla.

 

The competition will take place on Oklahoma State’s Cross Country Course, where 5,500 athletes will compete throughout the day, making it the largest non-championship competition in the country. The university, college and junior college field will be comprised of 102 teams. Top ranked men’s teams in the field are the No. 2 in the country, Oklahoma State Cowboys and No. 16 Northern Arizona. Highlighted women’s teams include No. 21 Texas Tech and No. 24 Northern Arizona.

 

Head coach Michael Smith is looking for this competition to continue to measure his teams as they grow closer towards regional competition. The Wildcats will see how they stack up against other Big 12 teams for the first time this season at the Jamboree with Kansas, Oklahoma, Oklahoma State and Texas Tech all competing.

 

“I would say that our conference season opens this weekend. It is not the most competitive meet we will run but it is the most competitive one we will run to date. In this race we will see multiple good Division-I teams,” said Smith.

 

The women’s team, now sixth in the regional standings, has established two top runners that have led the Wildcat pack thus far in the season with, junior Beverly Ramos and senior Liliani Mendez. Both have finished no worse than seventh place in each of the first two events with Ramos placing first in both. Ramos will continue to push for a top finish on a course that she will return to later on in the season for the Midwest Regional Championship. Sophomore Alyssa Bellinder, from Overland Park, will run for the first time this season to hopefully push the middle runners for the Wildcats.

 

“The women are going into this race with an attitude to see what we can do and really find out what kind of team we have. We are looking for a good pack run from our number 3 through 6 runners which will help our success in the competition,” said Smith.

 

For the men, sophomore Jack Sachse will make his collegiate cross country debut in hope of sparking the men’s team that is going up against the stiffest competition this year. Seniors Alex Umberger, Colin Swaney and Danny Schneider will be looking forward to running their last 8K race of their careers as the remainder of the schedule calls for 10K distances. The senior three have led the Cats for the past two years in competition and are looking to do the same but needing some young runners to push a middle pack. Swaney looks to build on his 19th place finish two weeks ago in Lincoln where he made his season debut.

Results will be posted at www.k-statesports.com as soon as they become available.