T-Bird XC Heads To The Golden State For Men’s And Women’s Meet

SUU Athletics Strategic Communications

Coming off of a successful first meet, both the men’s and women’s Thunderbird cross country squads look to continue momentum going into the UC Riverside Invitational on Saturday, September 16 in Riverside, California. This will be the first time the full team on both sides competes for SUU.

The Thunderbirds had second-place finishes for the men’s and women’s team at the Utah Valley Invitational, topping Idaho State and Westminster. Koy Moore led the way for the men’s side finishing second, while on the women’s side Morgan Porcaro was SUU’s top finisher in third place.

The T-Birds used this meet to give their younger athletes an early season race, and to give returners an opportunity to get a taste of competition before the top squads come together.

The Thunderbirds will be traveling to Riverside, California to compete against several of the top teams from around the NCAA.

“Riverside has always been a good meet for us, it is a good course and a good place for both genders,” SUU head coach Eric Houle said.

On the men’s side the T-Birds are ranked No. 16 by the USTFCCCA (United State Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association) and are charging into their first competition as a whole team.

As far as Houle’s game plan going into this weekend, he said he’s really looking forward to seeing what the team can bring to the table.

“We are going to push the pace and see what we are really made of and see who will be our top guys,” he said.

Senior Mike Tate is coming off a redshirt year, and a very successful outdoor track & field campaign. Tate competed at the NCAA Regional Championships in Austin, Texas in the 5,000-meter.

“It’s going to be really fun to watch him,” Houle said.

On the women’s side Houle looks forward to getting a good race under their belts.

“It’s a new team in a sense when you look at who we are red shirting this year,” he said.

Houle said that the game plan for this weekend is seeing how we run as a team and seeing who our top five will be.”

This season the Thunderbirds will be redshirting four major contributors from the 2016 campaign, including Angie Nickerson, Sharlie Dimick, Brighton Glassman and Julia Mahlke.

Newcomers to the team Houle is anxious to see compete are freshman Alison Pray and IPFW transfer Madison Fruchey.

Races are set to begin at 8:30 a.m. Mountain Time.

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