Oredigger Cross Country Shines at Preview

HELENA, Mont. – The Frontier Conference Preview Meet normally opens the season for the cross country teams but was delayed earlier in the month due to poor air quality. This years meet hosted by Carroll College at Bill Roberts Golf Course finally took place today with the host schools taking the top spot in both the men’s and women’s races. The Montana Tech men finished second behind the Saints and the women took third.

“We had a couple great individual performances today but overall a little short of how we expect our teams to race,” said head coach Zach Kughn. “It was great, however, to check out the course that the conference championship will be held on. It was a little hillier than I had expected and today the temps reached 80 degrees which was a factor as well.”

Individuals from Rocky Mountain took the top spot in both races with last year’s champion Sydney Little Light winning the women’s race and Jackson Wilson taking first place in the men’s race.

Oredigger runners Edwin Kipainoi and Hailey Nielson took second in both races.

Kipainoi finished with a time of 26:09.00 and 10 seconds behind Wilson in the 8k race. The Saints had four finishers in the top 10 and their fifth runner taking 11th place for a team score of 41. The Orediggers finished with a team score of 54.

Rocky finished with a team score of 71 for third in the men’s race.

Justin Morgan was the only other Oredigger finishing in the top 10 taking fifth with a time of 27:09.31. Aiden Valasty finished in 12th with a time of 28:01.23. Ian Barville finished in 14th with a time of 28:22.50.

The Saints top five runners were all in the top 10 of the women’s race.

Hailey Nielson completed the 5k race with a time of 19:29.90 and 1:17 behind Little Light. Carlin Manning took fifth with a time of 20:16.45. Abbey Hoffman finished in 16th with a time of 21:24.27.

“This was our second meet of the season but also the second meet which we were not originally scheduled to run. I’m glad we are going to get back on schedule now with our first home meet on October 7th. We have some things to clean up for sure, but I’m confident that we will be ready when it counts.”