WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. – The Purdue men’s and women’s cross country teams seek state supremacy, heading to Indiana State University for the 2009 Indiana Intercollegiate Championships on Friday. The Boilermaker women are eyeing their third consecutive state title, while the men hope to jump up from last year’s sixth-place showing.
Friday’s race will be held at the Sycamore’s NCAA Championship course in Terre Haute, Ind., the site of several national races, including this year’s championship race. The Indiana Intercollegiate Championships were last held at Indiana State in 2006, when the Purdue men took home second place overall, while the women were third.
The Boilermaker women have won six of the last 10 state titles, adding wins in 2004, 2002, 2001 and 1999, to their current streak, while the men are in search of their first Indiana Intercollegiate crown since 2001, the only season in which the Boilermakers swept both the men’s and women’s titles.
"We have our sights set on the state titles," said head coach Jack Warner. "This will be our first taste of team competition this year, and we’re ready to race. Our women have a great chance to defend their team title, while the men will look to establish themselves as one of the state’s best."
The Purdue women have won the last two Indiana Intercollegiate titles, scoring just 49 points in 2007, and 45 points in 2008. Senior Kristin Phillips has been a major part of both titles, posting top-five individual finishes the last two years. She was fifth in 2007, clocking a time of 17:56.59, earned third in 2008, with a mark of 18:02.0, and hopes to vie for her first career state title this weekend. She’ll get support from a similar cast from the Boilermakers’ season-opener, including freshman Camille Buscomb, sophomores Stephanie Bonk and Katie Conrad, and senior Sarah Klaczynski.
Buscomb finished third overall in her first collegiate race with a time of 18:46.55, while Bonk, Klaczysnki and Conrad finished in order at fifth, sixth and seventh at the Great American Legends race. Junior Jennifer Hall and rookie Linsey Daluga are set to make their season debuts on Friday, hoping to add support to the lineup as well alongside freshmen Kelly McCurdy and Erin Czuprynski.
On the men’s side, the Boilermakers will feature nearly the same lineup from the Great American Legends race, adding just sophomore New Zealander Simon Rogers to the lineup. Rogers hopes to keep pace with junior standout Caden Shields, who led the team with a collegiate-best 8K time of 25:28.60 on Purdue’s home course.
Sophomore Cale Allen hopes to back up his solid season-debut with another solid outing, while first-years Robert Stewart, Stephen Schulz and Steven Stoot look to hold their spots towards the top of the Boilermaker lineup. Rounding out the list of Purdue harriers scheduled to run are sophomores Ladd Mercer, Charles White and Dominic DeSantis.
The women’s 5K race is scheduled to take off at 4:30 p.m., while the men’s 8K outing will follow at 5:15 p.m. For more information on the race visit GoSycamores.com and for a full recap and times visit PurdueSports.com after Friday’s races.