Cougars finish first at Bill Dellinger Invitational

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Five BYU men’s runners finished in the top 10 to give them a winning score of 32 at the Bill Dellinger Invitational on Saturday in Louisville, Ky.

Jared Ward, who finished first for BYU, was second overall behind Oregon standout Trevor Dunbar, who finished first overall for the meet.

The final Dellinger Invitational scores were as follows:  BYU 32, Oregon 49, Southern Utah 111, University of Washington 114, Gonzaga 130, Seattle University 181, Sac. St. 185, University of Massachusetts 223, UC Riverside 233 and Idaho 240.

Finishing behind Ward for the Cougars were teammates Tylor Thatcher, fifth, Conner Peloquin, sixth, Steve Flint, ninth and Rex Shields, tenth, rounding up the top 10.

“It was a very good team outing,” BYU Head Coach Ed Eyestone said. “Our guys were patient and did very well placing five runners in the top 10. I thought it was a smart race, we ran as a pack and it turned out there was a 20-second time difference from the first finisher to the fifth. I was very pleased with the result.”

Jared Ward also felt that his team did well winning the meet together as a whole group.

“It was fun to run as a pack with a bunch of BYU guys and for most of the race there were Cougars all around,” Ward said.

As the season goes on, the Cougars theme of “one” will continue to implement as a group, as they workout together week by week.

“We put a lot of emphasis on focus of one day at a time, one week at a time, one race at a time.” Ward said. “As far as team goals going into this race, I felt like we accomplished everything we set out to do.”

One can always learn what doesn’t go well and find something that could be done better. There are always small disappointments along the way, but for the Cougars, one meets missed expectation is just another motivation to do better.

“You focus on the things you did well and come back with new strength and plan to do things you didn’t do well better,” Eyestone said

In preparation for  pre-nationals on Oct. 13th, Eyestone has full confidence in his team’s capability to run another good race.

At the Greater Louisville Invitational, the Lady Cougars finished 14th overall with the underclassmen leading the way for BYU.

Rachel Stewart, a walk-on from Great Falls, Mont., finished the race No. 69 overall and first for BYU. Following behind her were teammates Kathryn Vidmar, No. 71, McKenna Smith, No. 74,Carrie Jube, No. 94 and Ashleigh Warner, No. 107 respectively to round out the Cougars’ top five.

“I think we learned a little bit more of  how to handle a large race with really good competition,” BYU women’s head coach Patrick Shane said, regarding the talented pool of teams that compromised the meet. “There are some challenges with a large race and it’s a learning curve.”

On Oct. 12th, the Cougars will have their entire roster ready to run at the Wisconsin Adidas Invitational, as they will need good performances from each runner.

Rachel Stewart acknowledged that this race was an improvement for the team from last meets.

“It’s really hard to get into a race because its a lot shorter and it was a 5K,” Stewart said. “Overall the workouts have been really good so we were ready for it.”

The theme for the women’s team is, “believe” and for Stewart it is a big part of her motivation to run well.

“You run as a team and we try to stay together when we run,” Stewart said.

Stewart believes that they are only going to get better as the season goes by.

Shane had only good things to say from this weekend’s measuring stick of success for his team.

“Overall, a positive meet and we accomplished what we came here to accomplish,” Shane said.

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