NORMAN, Okla. – The University of Oklahoma cross country program travels south as it competes in the Big 12 Championships this Saturday in Waco, Texas at the Cottonwood Golf Course.
“I feel like we are ready for our best meet of the season,” said Associate Head Coach Jason Dunn. “We have done really well with our training over the last two weeks since we competed last. Both groups have made a lot of progress.”
The No. 27 regionally-ranked Oklahoma men’s team is one of three ranked teams competing in the 8,000-meter men’s race, which is slated to start at 10 a.m. CT. No. 3 Oklahoma State and No. 29 Texas are the other two ranked men’s teams slated to compete.
Daniel Aldaba, Jacob Burcham, Alex Deir, Brandon Doughty, Allen Eke, Patrick Gomez, Eric Graf, Kyle Polman, Dan Schubert and Abbabiya Simbassa are scheduled to run for Oklahoma. Doughty and Schubert finished 26th and 50th in last year’s competition, respectively.
Oklahoma’s men have finished ninth or better in every race this season, including winning the Missouri Southern Stampede.
The Sooner women compete in the 6,000-meter race at 11 a.m. CT. The race features one nationally-ranked program in No. 8 Iowa State.
Competing for the Sooner women are Elena Arriaza, Morgan Baulier, Marissa Codipsodi, Ashley Guidot, Hilary Krein, Lane Maguire, Kelsey McKee and Bryce Perry. OU brings an array of fresh faces to this year’s championships as there are no returners who raced in last season’s championship.
At the 2012 Big 12 Championships, the men’s team placed third en route to its fourth consecutive top-three finish, and the women finished ninth.
“We want to finish better than we did last year,” Dunn said. “Moving up from last year is a simple way of saying that we just want to improve upon that.”
The top men's and women's teams are Big 12 champions, while the top 15 individuals in each race earn All-Big 12 honors. The top newcomer in each race will earn Newcomer of the Year accolades.
“Our whole team is a lot more ready to race now than we were at the beginning of the season,” explained Dunn. “Everybody is in good spirits and we are excited about the weekend.”
Complete results and a full recap of the race will be available on Soonersports.com shortly after the events conclusion. Video highlights will also be available following the races via Big12sports.com.