Oct. 8, 2011
GOODYEAR, Ariz. – The No 23 Arizona State University men’s cross country team won their second meet of the season Saturday, taking home the team title at the Grand Canyon Invitational in Goodyear, Ariz., while the Sun Devil women took second.
Paced by sophomore Steven Schnieders, the men’s squad won multiple meets in a season for just the third time in history and the first time since 2005. Despite running the team’s ‘B’ lineup, four Sun Devils were among the first five team competitors to finish the race and all five point-scorers were among the top-15 runners in the team competition. ASU’s team score of 28 points is good for the 11th-lowest total team score in school history.
Schnieders was up front for the majority of the competition over the 8,000-meter course at Estrella Mountain Regional Park, racing his way to a time of 25:18.5 to finish second among the team competition runners and third overall. It was a solid performance for the second-year runner out of Yorba Linda, Calif., as he looks to be returning to the form that made him an ASU point-scorer at last year’s conference championship.
Behind Schnieders was true freshman Domenic D’Acquisto in third place (among the team scorers) in a time of 25:23.6 as he, too, made a case for being a member of the Sun Devil roster that could make a difference come the Pac-12 Championships hosted by ASU at the end of the month.
Sophomore Matt Estlund was next for ASU, crossing the line fourth among team competitors in 25:30.9 and was followed by walk-on freshman Josh Walker in 25:36.9, which was good for fifth among the collegiate team competitors.
Scott Albright, another newer addition to the team, tallied the final points for the Sun Devils with a 14th-place finish in the team competition in 26:02.4, just missing giving ASU its fifth runner under 26 minutes. Arizona State’s No. 6 runner Andrew Hagler also almost cracked the 26-minute mark with a 16th-place, 26:03.9 performance.
On the women’s side, junior Hailey Hanna ran her best race of the season, finishing fourth among point-scoring individuals in a time of 18:30.3. Sophomore Karlee Owens was next in line, finishing seventh on the team-scoring side of things in 18:44.1.
The Sun Devil women rounded out the top-10 scorers with senior Kauren Tarver finishing eighth in 18:46.9 and freshman Taylor Conway not far behind in 10th in a time of 18:58.9. Freshman Shaina Corbin rounded out the point-scoring individuals with a 11th-place 19:01.2 performance.
The team’s 40 points was good for a runner-up finish to the University of Arizona.
The ASU cross country schedule now really kicks into gear, with both squads looking to earn their first points towards a national championship bid next weekend at the Wisconsin Invitational in Madison, Wisc. From there, the team will then kick off the championship calendar beginning with the Pac-12 Championships, hosted by ASU at the Wigwam Golf Resort in Litchfield Park, Ariz., on Oct. 29.