Utah State Cross Country Has Solid Showing In Season Opener

LOGAN, Utah – Junior Brian McKenna took top honors at the Utah State Cross Country Open for the second straight year to lead the Aggie men to a first-place finish Saturday at the American West Heritage Center south of Logan. The Aggie women, who were led by junior Jessie Chugg, placed fourth overall in the season opening meet for both teams. “Overall I saw a lot of really good things this morning,” USU head coach Gregg Gensel said. “They stuck to the plan we had. We controlled the first half of the race and that is important at this time of the season.” Utah State had four of the top five finishers on the men’s side in the 6K race led by McKenna who finished in 21:49.9. Junior Daniel Howell placed third for USU (22:02.8), while Hunter Nelson was fourth (22:34.0) and Chio Lopez fifth (22:40.8). “Our plan was to stick together the first half of the race and we really did that well,” McKenna said. “I was able to catch the Weber State athlete after that and we had a good spread at the finish because we stuck to the plan in the beginning.” The Aggie men took first overall and Weber State came in second with the Utah Ski team in third. Utah State also had four more runners finish in the top 10 on the men’s side as freshman Kyle McKenna placed seventh (22:55.4), sophomore Michael Budge was eighth (23:08.6), senior Eric Larson came in ninth (23:12.6), and freshman Jacob Barton placed 10th (23:13.7). Other Aggie finishers on the men’s side include junior Aaron Clements in 14th (23:34.4), junior Steven Atkinson in 16th (23:55.7) and sophomore Devin Lang in 22nd (25:16.3). Chugg led the Aggie women in the 5K race with a time of 17:39.3 to finish in 11th-place, while fellow junior Ruth Hilton was 15th (17:45.6) and senior Kim Quinn came in 23rd (17:57.2). “I think we did well, we really stuck to the plan we had set,” Chugg said. “We have some things to work on but I think we did well at what we set out to do today.” Brigham Young’s Katie Bowen won the women’s race with a time of 16:48.0 to lead the Cougars to the first-place finish. Weber State placed second overall, followed by Utah and Utah State. Other Aggie finishers on the women’s side include sophomore Alex Litzsinger placed 36th (18:14.0), sophomore Stephanie Burt was 38th (18:17.7), sophomore Marissa Floodman was 42nd (18:33.3), sophomore Laura Hatch was 50th (19:04.5), freshman Ashley Robison was 53rd (19:11.0), freshman Brittany Fisher was 55th (19:18.5), senior Lexie Meyer was 57th (19:27.4), freshman McKayla Williams was 58th (19:38.7), freshman Hailey Dutson was 61st (19:50.8), freshman Michelle Kaaen was 62nd (19:54.9) and sophomore Hazel Richardson was 67th (20:15.0). Utah State’s cross country teams will return to action on Saturday, Sept. 18 when it travels to Bozeman, Mont., to compete in the Montana State Invitational. Utah State Open ResultsSept. 4, 2010American West Heritage Center Men’s Team Results1. UTAH STATE – 202. Weber State – 413. Utah Ski – NP4. UNA – NP Men’s Top 5 Finishers1. Brian McKenna (USU), 21:49.9 2. Brett Hales (WSU), 21:59.7 3. Daniel Howell (USU), 22:02.84. Hunter Nelson (USU), 22:34.0 5. Chio Lopez (USU), 22:40.8 Utah State Men’s Finishers1. Brian McKenna, 21:49.9 3. Daniel Howell, 22:02.84. Hunter Nelson, 22:34.0 5. Chio Lopez, 22:40.87. Kyle McKenna, 22:55.48. Mike Budge, 23:08.69. Eric Larson, 23:12.610. Jacob Barton, 23:13.7 14, Aaron Clements, 23:34.416. Steven Atkinson, 23:55.722. Devin Lang, 25:16.3 Women’s Team Results1. BYU – 232. Weber State – 463. Utah – 834. UTAH STATE – 845. Utah Ski – NP6. UNA – NP Top 5 Women’s Finishers1. Katie Bowen (BYU), 16:48.0 2. Sarah Callister (WSU), 16:54.1 3. Nicole Nielsen (BYU), 17:05.0 4. Taylor Thornley (WSU), 17:13.8 5. Rachel Lange (BYU), 17:20.3 Utah State Women’s Finishers11. Jessie Chugg, 17:39.313. Ruth Hilton, 17:45.615. Kim Quinn, 17:57.222. Alex Litzsinger, 18:14.023. Stephanie Burt, 18:17.724. Marissa Floodman, 18:33.326. Laura Hatch, 19:04.553. Ashley Robison, 19:11.0 55. Brittany Fisher, 19:18.557. Lexie Meyer, 19:27.458. McKayla Williams, 19:38.761. Haley Dutson, 19:50.862. Michelle Kaaen, 19:54.967. Hazel Richardson, 20:15.0 -USU-

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