Tulsa cross country pulls off strong performance at the Hurricane Invitational.
Heading into the season with a healthy team and coming off a great offseason, the Tulsa Cross Country teams prepared their course for the Hurricane Invitational. On Saturday, Sept. 1, the Hurricane runners arrived at Mohawk Soccer Complex to run an 8K and a two mile course against Oklahoma State University, Oklahoma University, and Arkansas University.
The men, racing at 9 a.m., could only have seven runners on the roster for the meet. Running for TU were Isaac Akers, Bryan Cobaz, Adam Breaux, Braydon Rennie, Reed Sahedevan, Cameron Field and Austin Del Rosso. TU, expecting two in the top five, was hoping to come out on top in the meet. The men lined up for their 10K (4 mile) race with 26 runners total. TU then kept a solid position throughout the entire race. As the laps proceeded and the runners broke up, Tulsa kept four in the top 10. Akers hung in third, behind an Arkansas and Oklahoma runner, with Del Rosso, Cameron Field and Adam Breaux filling in directly behind them in the mix of other racers.
TU filled up the front pack of the race until the final lap started and Akers took off. Each lap being a mile, it seemed that Akers kicked it in way too early and would fall back, but the gap between him and the second place runner behind him continued to grow. Del Rosso turned on the heat behind Akers’s trail, putting the pressure on Arkansas and Oklahoma. Akers had time to spare reaching the finish line, able to look back and see Rosso and the rest of the pack pulling up behind him. Akers finished first overall with a time of 20:12. Del Rosso came in behind him at 20:23 in fourth. Cameron Field was 10 seconds behind him (20:33) in sixth place. Breaux kept in the top four Tulsa runners in the top 10, as he placed eighth in 20:38. Sahadevan pulled up in 17th place in 21:33. Rennie came in 19th in 21:33. The seventh man for TU, Bryan Corbaz, then strode around the corner in 21st in 21:42.
The Tulsa Men’s Cross Country team finished first overall. TU’s final score of 36 was just barely in front of Arkansas’ 37. Oklahoma University was a little further behind with 55, and then Oklahoma State in last with 98.
Immediately after, the Women’s two-mile race kicked off. OSU brought a lot more female runners, so the women’s race consisted of 37. Racing for TU were Reagan Hausmann, Alyssa Solberg, Alice Newcombe, Allison Bailey, Avery Culpepper and Katie Andrews. Unlike in the men’s race, the ladies had over half of the runners remaining in a tight pack nearly the entire race. Oklahoma State and Oklahoma runners led the pack with TU and Arkansas filling in the gaps. Hausman led for Tulsa, but Solberg and Newcomb were right on her heels.
The women’s race was close and compacted. The competitiveness allowed small gaps between each runner for the finish. Hausmann finished in fourth with 11:25. Behind her was Solberg in sixth in 11:29, and Newcomb tied for seventh in 11:33. Bailey came in a little after the front pack in 19th place in 12:17. Then, Culpepper in 22nd in 12:33, and Andrews in 24th in 12:41.
The Tulsa Women finished fourth overall. Oklahoma came in first with 48 points, then Oklahoma State with 50, Arkansas with 55 and TU with 59.
Both teams had the tone set early for their season and could decide what they needed to do to improve and rise above competitive teams such as the three they ran against on Saturday. The training doesn’t stop for TU Cross Country; preparing still for faster times and improved positions before the Nuttycombe Invitational Race in Madison, Wisconsin on Sept. 28th.