It’s a weekend of brand-new beginnings for the Department of Athletics, as football prepares to open an on-campus stadium for the first time in 59 years. The cross country team also will expereince a brand-new course as it returns to Abilene to host the Naimadu Classic on Saturday.
The meet will serve as a the Wildcats second dual meet against University of Incarnate Word and Stephen F. Austin, but also will feature Angelo State, UT-Permian Basin, Trinity, McMurry and Schreiner University.
The Wildcats come into the meet after a good showing two weekends ago at the Bear Twilight Invitational, in which the men won 1-of-2 and the women swept their opponents. Redshirt senior Alexandria Hackett led the Wildcats in that meet with a third-place overall finish in the 4k that catapulted her to a Southland Conference Women’s Cross Country Athlete of the Week award.
On the men’s side, senior Ryan Cleary earned an honorable mention Southland award, as he finished 11th in the 6k.
After the meet, ACU was ranked 5th in the South-Central region, dropping from 2nd despite beating TCU and Texas State. Nonetheless, the Wildcats still remain the team to beat in the Southland Conference.
The meet will be the first of two in Abilene this season. The Southland conference championships will also be here in late October.
The men’s race will begin at 8 a.m., and the women’s will begin at 8:35 a.m. The new Cross Country Course is located Southeast of campus on East North 10th Street, just west of Loop 322.