The Iowa women’s cross country team finished first in the 5,000-meter race at the 2021 Dirksen-Greeno Invitational in Lincoln, Nebraska, Saturday morning. Just three points separated first-place Iowa from second-place Nebraska. The Hawkeyes racked up 41 points, and the Cornhuskers accumulated 28.
The Hawkeye men’s cross country team placed third in the 8,000-meter at the Dirksen-Greeno Invitational. The race was nearly 2,000 meters longer than the first one Iowa ran in the Hawkeye Invitational at the Ashton Cross Country Course in Iowa City on Sept. 3.
Senior Emma Gordon, freshman Lauren McMahon, and sophomores Kelli Tosic and Brooke McKee all finished in the 5,000-meter’s top 10 as individuals.
“I was very excited for our women’s team,” Hawkeye head coach Randy Hasenbank said. “We competed well as a team, and a 13-second gap is impressive. They knew what needed to be done on the course today in order to reach their team goals by the end of the season. “Today was a big step in the right direction. Kelli [Tosic], Gabby [Skopec] and Emma [Gordon] are doing a great job with training and racing in regards to bringing our young runners along.”
Hawkeye men’s runners Nick Trattner and Noah Healy led the charge as individuals for Iowa, placing 25th and 26th, respectively.
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“On the men’s side, Nick [Trattner] and Noah [Healy] competed very well in their first cross country race in nearly two years,” Hasenbank said. “Our youth and lack of experience showed with the younger runners. They have only raced 5K in high school, so 8K is a big jump. We have a talented, young group. We just need a little more seasoning in these long races.”
The Hawkeye women have now won the Dirksen-Greeno Invitational twice in the last three years. Iowa finished first at the 2019 Dirksen-Greeno Invitational. The Hawkeyes did not run the race in 2020 because of COVID-19.
The Iowa men’s cross country team also won the 2019 Dirksen-Greeno Invitational.
RUNNING AS A PACK
The Hawkeye women’s cross country team had four runners finish in the top ten, placing sixth, seventh, eighth, and ninth, respectively. Freshman Miriam Sandeen and junior Gabby Skopec placed 12th and 13th.
The Hawkeyes’ next race will come in Columbia, Missouri, at the Gans Creek Invitational Oct. 1. The meet’s men’s and women’s events will both begin at 10 a.m.