Tuesday, September 25, 2012

ACU Cross Country Preview


Special by Don Garrett

2012 Cross Country Review: ACU
This will be a very strange season for ACU. There is probably no way that they will be contenders on the men’s or women’s side. ACU released their distance/XC coach after last season (he is now at Claflin in South Carolina) and was not able to procure a replacement until the 2nd week of the current school year. ACU will have enough people to field a team of 5 at most meets, if they do not have any injuries whatsoever. On paper, they have 7 men and 6 women on the roster, with several people in each gender being walk-ons. New XC coach, Chris Ward, has a big task ahead of him, but he had success at NAIA Oklahoma City University, so he should be up to the task.

MEN – finished 2nd in 2011 with 68 points, a full 40 points behind ENMU and 31 points ahead of TAMU-C. Both of those squads come back loaded this year.

LOST FROM LAST SEASON
·         Fabian Wessel-Terharn – had a great XC season, placing 5th in the LSC, but was injured the entire track season, only placing 11th in the steeple at conference and heading home to Germany after the season for good
·         Spencer Lynn – coming back from a serious injury, he placed 11th at the LSC XC meet, then sustained another serious injury between the indoor and outdoor season and looks like he is gone for good from the program
·         Will Pike – 17th in the conference XC meet, he finished a disappointing 9th in the 10K on the track after finishing 4th in both the 5K and 10K in 2011
·         Marshall Holland – 19th at XC meet last fall, he had already left the program by last spring
·         Daniel Gliemar – 45th at the LSC XC meet, he ran a very poor 12th in the 1500 and 27th in the 5K – after the outdoor season he headed back to Sweden as well
·         Trey Knight – 64th in the XC meet and did not run track in the spring
·         Jake Schofield – redshirted XC, then placed 8th in the conference steeple (after finishing 5th in 2011) – apparently passed up his last year of eligibility as a grad student to take a high-paying job – imagine that

RETURNEES
·         Erik Forrister – 16th in the XC season, he just missed scoring at the LSC track meet, finishing 9th in the 5K and 11th in the 10K – a strong XC man
·         Gary Duncan – 51st in the XC season and only 34th in the LSC 5K on the track
·         James Grantham – 63rd in XC – immense potential, but has never been able to put that potential to work while at ACU – not sure if he has any eligibility left for XC, but he is listed on the roster
·         Banjo Jaiyesimi – did not run XC conference in 2011, but was 3rd in the 800 and 8th in the 1500 at the LSC track meet – more of a 400/800 man than a distance runner, but he will need to run for sure to fill out the squad

NEWCOMERS
·         Xavier King – freshman from Ajax, Ontario, Pickering HS – a serious candidate for Freshman of the Year in the conference – at the Ontario provincial championships in 2012, he won the 2000 steeple (yep, they run the steeple in HS in Canada), was 3rd in the 1500 and 4th in the 5K. His 2000 steeple time would have won the Texas Relays HS Inv steeple by over 10 seconds – I found a 3:52 1500 and 8:23 3K time – this kid is good
·         Taylor Ochs – freshman from Midland Christian HS – 32nd in the TAPPS 4A XC and 3rd in the TAPPS 4A 800 last spring. Also 3rd in the Texas Tech HS Inv Indoor 800, so he has some indoor experience.
·         Christopher John – Keller HS – JV squadman at KHS

WOMEN – ACU finished in unfamiliar territory at the LSC meet, finishing 4th, only 3 points behind 3rd place Angelo State and 5 points ahead of ENMU. Most of their team is back, but they didn’t add any additional firepower to last’s years team and they have one notable subtraction from the squad. Looks like they may fall another place or 2 in 2012.

LOST FROM LAST SEASON
·         Chloe Susset is on campus, but apparently not eligible for the fall – she was the conference runnerup in XC in 2011, then came back to win the steeple and the 1500 and finishing 2nd in the 5K to rack up 28 points at the conference track meet – the most dominant distance runner in the LSC

RETURNEES
·         Alyse Goldsmith – Sr - arguably the best distance runner in the LSC in 2010-11 (when she was 2nd in the XC Meet and won the 5K/10K on the track), she is still right at the top of the LSC. Last year, she was 3rd in the XC meet and then 3rd in the 10K and 4th in the 5K last spring. Should still be right at the top of the LSC.
·         Ayesha Rumble – Sr - 18th in the XC meet, she came back to place 2nd in the LSC 800 and 5th in the 1500 on the track – she is also on the ACU 4x400 relay, showing great versatility
·         Emily Hill – So - finished a disappointing 59th in the conference XC meet, but came back last spring to finish 4th in the LSC 800
·         Mariah Welty-Kile – So – military vet who ran pretty well last fall, finishing 29th at the LSC XC meet, but did not run on the track in the spring
·         Rachel Belcher – Jr – 67th at the LSC XC meet, but did not run in the spring on the track
·         Kayla Calvert – Jr – she placed 6th in the LSC pole vault in 2011, but has apparently switched over to distances after training with the distance runners all last spring

NEWCOMERS – none, since there was no one to recruit distance runners at ACU in the late spring/summer – I imagine ACU may pick up a distance runner or 2 at mid-term, but that won’t help the XC team

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