Women’s cross-country finishes strong in first place

Josh Woolwine, Reporter

The UW Oshkosh men’s and women’s cross-country teams competed at the UW Oshkosh Open on Friday, which was moved to UW-Whitewater due to poor conditions at Lake Breeze Golf Course in Winneconne.

The men took third at the four-team invite while the women took home the title in what was the final meet before the Wisconsin Intercollegiate Athletic Conference Championship on Nov. 2.

“The meet at Whitewater last Friday was the final opportunity for some of our runners to compete in an official meet this year, as we can only take 12 to conference,” head coach Eamon McKenna said. “We also were looking to solidify our rosters for conference.”

McKenna said he was proud of his runners for battling for a spot on the conference team.

Lauren Urban finished second out of 32 runners with a time of 25:01, leading the women’s cross-country team to a first-place finish at the meet with a score of 30 points.

UW-Stevens Point came in second with a score of 41 points. UW-Whitewater took third with 54 points and Maranatha Baptist University placed fourth with 94 points.

Skyler Yunk lead the men’s cross-country team with a time of 28:04, finishing eighth out of 54 runners.

“Skyler Yunk ran a strong race to earn the final spot on our conference team for the men with Andrew Strasser earning the alternate spot,” McKenna said. “Tricia Cich competed well to earn the final spot for the women, with Megan Berg earning the alternate spot.”

While the location changed on short notice, the Titans were prepared for it regardless.
Originally scheduled to be held at the Lake Breeze Golf Club in Winneconne, the meet was relocated to UW-Whitewater.

“We did not need to do anything in particular after the location changed,” McKenna said. “It made for more work on my end in terms of communicating with teams, organizing travel, etc., and UW-Whitewater’s cross-country staff stepped up in helping us. Otherwise, the mentality on race day was the same for our group that was competing.”

While the Titans were also solidifying the final roster spots for the WIAC Championship, the top group from both the men’s and women’s sides took the opportunity to rest before the big meet on Nov. 2.

“Our top groups had two very quality workouts this past week,” McKenna said. “This allowed them to have a week off from ‘race stress’ while continuing to put in quality work that will serve us into the championship season. Due to the layout of the week, many of them were able to have a lower key weekend as well to get some additional rest and recovery.”

McKenna also mentioned that unless weather becomes a major factor, the course for the WIAC Championship should be good to go on Saturday.

“I don’t anticipate any obstacles at the WIAC Championship site unless there ends up being a lot of snow,” he said. “That always makes things more challenging in terms of practice, travel and mentality, but the fact will be that every team would have to deal with that. The WIAC is the deepest conference in the country, and it is always a great opportunity and challenge for our student-athletes to see how they stack up. We are excited to get after it.”