WWU to Open Season at SMU Cross Country Meet

Sept. 8, 2017

BELLINGHAM, Wash. - The Western Washington University cross country teams are set to open the 2017 season on Saturday, competing at the Saint Martin's University Cross Country Meet in Lacey, Wash.

The Vikings were originally scheduled to begin the season at the Central Washington University Apple Ridge Invitational on Saturday, hosted in Yakima, Wash., but air quality concerns forced a cancellation of the meet. In lieu of the cancelled meet, SMU will host WWU and CWU for a meet Saturday on the SMU campus with the women's 4K at 10 am followed by the men's 6K at 10:45 am.

The WWU men have been predicted to place 2nd in the conference by the Great Northwest Athletic Conference Preseason Coaches Poll while the WWU women have been predicted to place 4th. The men enter the season ranked 7th and the women ranked 9th in the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA) West Region rankings. The WWU men are also 3rd among teams receiving votes just outside the national USTFCCCA top 25 poll.

During 2016, the WWU men were 3rd and the women 4th at the GNAC Championships. The men went on to placed 7th while the women finished 8th at the NCAA II West Regional last season with senior Isaac Derline (Kent, WA/Kentridge) advancing to the NCAA II Championships as an individual.

Led by head coach Pee Wee Halsell, entering his 31st year leading the Vikings, the WWU men welcome back 3 of 5 scoring placers and 5 of the team's top 7 finishers from the 2016 GNAC Championships while the WWU women return 3 of 5 scoring placers and 4 of the team's top 7 finishers from the conference meet last year.

Derline and senior Andrew Wise (Denver, CO/East) were both All-West Region honorees last year, with Derline also placing 3rd at the GNAC Championships to earn All-GNAC accolades. Redshirt sophomore Peter Butler (Port Angeles, WA), junior Dylan Hayes (Seattle, WA/Garfield) and junior Justin Irvine (Yakima, WA/East Valley) return after each finishing among the top 40 at the 2016 GNAC Championships. Senior Sean Eustis (Washougal, WA) returns after finishing among the top 30 at the NCAA II West Regional in 2015.

For the WWU women, senior Lillianna Stelling (Langley, WA/South Whidbey) was the top conference placer for WWU last year before earning All-West Region honors at the NCAA II West Regional. Senior Maddy Hutchison (Snoqualmie, WA/Mount Si), sophomore Peyton Shinnick (Maple Valley, WA/Tahoma) and sophomore Sophia Galvez (Los Alamos, NM) all finished among the top 35 for WWU at the 2016 GNAC Championships. Senior Alexandra Laiblin (Oak Harbor, WA) did not compete at the GNAC Championships last year but placed 25th at the 2015 conference meet while redshirt sophomore Tracy Melville (Lamont, WA/Lin-Ritzville/Sprague) was a redshirt last season after finishing 10th at the 2015 GNAC Championships.

Saturday's meet marks the first of three consecutive weekends of competition for WWU as the Vikings will travel to the Sundodger Invitational, hosted by the University of Washington at Lincoln Park on Sept. 16, before competing in two locations (SMU Open hosted by SMU at SMU campus and Roy Griak Invitational hosted by the University of Minnesota at Les Bolstad Golf Course) the following weekend on Sept. 23. The Vikings will have two meets at home in October, hosting the 44th Annual WWU Classic (Oct. 7) and GNAC Championships (Oct. 21) at East Lake Padden Park.

2017 WWU Cross Country Schedule

DATE

MEET

SITE

TIME

Sept. 9 (Sat.)

Central Washington Invitational

Host: Central Washington University

Yakima, WA (Apple Ridge Run)

Cancelled

Sept. 9 (Sat.)

Saint Martin's University Cross Country Meet

Host: Saint Martin's University

Lacey, WA (SMU Campus)

10 am

Sept. 16 (Sat.)

Sundodger Invitational

Host: University of Washington

Seattle, WA (Lincoln Park)

9 am

Sept. 23 (Sat.)

Roy Griak Invitational

Host: University of Minnesota

St. Paul, MN (Les Bolstad Golf Course)

9:50 am CT

Sept. 23 (Sat.)

Saint Martin's University Invitational

Host: Saint Martin's University

Lacey, WA (SMU Campus)

9:30 am

Oct.  7 (Sat.)

44th Annual WWU Classic

Host: Western Washington University

BELLINGHAM (E. Lake Padden Park)

10 am

Oct.  21 (Sat.)

GNAC Championships

Host. Western Washington University

BELLINGHAM (E. Lake Padden Park)

10 am

Nov.  4 (Sat.)

NCAA Division II West Regional

Host: Western Oregon University

Monmouth, OR (Ash Creek Preserve)

10 am

Nov.  18 (Sat.)

NCAA Division II National Championships

Host: Evansville Sports Corporation

Evansville, IN (Angel Mounds)

TBA

 

 

Headlines

Schedules
Vikings Photos

VIKINGS TRENDING WALL

Partners and Sponsors