Sherrod Park will play host to the ACU cross country team’s final home meet of the season Friday. Four schools, including Texas Tech, will race at the first home meet for the Wildcats since 2011. Angelo State, South Plains and West Texas College will also be there to compete.
ACU is coming off of a bye-week where both men and women’s teams hit it hard in practices. Junior Alexandria Hackett, no. 2 runner on the women’s side, believes these past two weeks is what the team needed.
“Since we were able to have two weeks of training, it allowed us to train hard and still have time to recover,” Hackett said, “I think this will help us have some great performances this Friday. We had a great first meet but we were training through it so we know that we are capable of running some even faster times. ”
The Wildcats competed two weeks ago at the McMurry Bill Libby Invitational, where the women’s team swept the top seven spots. Led by junior Diana Garcia-Munoz, ACU scored a perfect 15.
After that, the women’s team were ranked top 10 in the nation’s cross-country rankings.
Texas Tech men’s team comes into Friday’s race ranked 14th in the mountain region rankings. Though the women’s side for the Red Raiders is unranked, it doesn’t mean the Wildcats are counting them out.
“With Tech being here this week, I think it is bringing more excitement rather than nerves to the team,” Hacket said, “We are confident in our training and know that tough competition only results in greater performances.”
The men’s team finished fifth two weeks ago at their season opener with senior Daniel Block leading the team with a third place finish. Tactics have changed for Friday’s race.
“The coaches have been telling us to be confident in our abilities and to put focus on running against those schools as if they didn’t have a name on their jersey,” sophomore Ryan Cleary said.
Cleary finished in the top ten, right behind Block. The men’s side is comprised of all returners while the women have two freshmen.
“The freshmen have stepped up unbelievably this year. There are only two of them but they are crucial to our success,” Hackett said.
The Wildcats will race at 6 p.m. at Sherrod park located directly behind Smith Adams hall.