By Robert McKinney, Assistant Athletics Director, Communications
SALEM, Ore. -- Willamette University runner Michael Montague (Sr., San Diego, CA/Canyon Crest Academy) placed 11th out of 147 competitors in the Men's Cardinal 8-kilometer race at the 45th Annual Charles Bowles Willamette Invitational on Saturday, Oct. 5 at Bush's Pasture Park. Molly Murphy-Brown (So., Sandy, OR/Sandy HS) was the Bearcats' top finisher in the Women's Cardinal 5-kilometer race, as she placed 48th out of 169 runners. Audrey Piacsek (So., Ellensburg, WA/Ellensburg HS) of Willamette was 49th and Kyla Shade (Sr., Snohomish, WA/Snohomish HS) of Willamette was 51st.
The Willamette women's team earned eighth place out of 17 teams in the Women's Cardinal standings. The Bearcat men's team placed 10th out of 16 teams in the Men's Cardinal standings. Teams from NCAA Division I, NCAA Division II and NCAA Division III competed in the Cardinal races. Willamette was joined by the other eight Northwest Conference teams as participants in the meet.
Montague registered a time of 25:04.9. It was the second-fastest time of his career, bested only by his personal record of 24:51.4 at last year's Willamette Invitational. On Saturday, he was just 4.8 seconds out of taking 10th place in the race and only 9.7 seconds out of 6th. Montague was the third NCAA Division III runner to cross the finish line.
The winner of the Men's Cardinal 8K race was Colin Monaghan from the University of Puget Sound, who completed the course in 24:37.5. Calahan Warren from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University (Fla.) was second in 24:49.4 and Matt Schumann from the University of Portland was third at 24:50.9. Sean Richardson of Lewis & Clark College placed fourth at 24:51.5. Carter Ledwith from Eastern Washington University was fifth in 24:52.6.
University of Portland won the Men's Cardinal team title with a score of 48 (3-6-8-12-19). Portland State was second at 71, with Eastern Washington in third at 94 and Embry-Riddle in fourth at 114. Humboldt State University (Calif.) placed fifth at 122.
Joining Montague as runners who scored in the Men's Cardinal race for the Bearcats were Gabriel Regimbal (Fy., Bellingham, WA/Squalicum HS), Ronan Davies (Fy., Juneau, AK/Juneau-Douglas HS), Kellen Bulger (Sr., Spokane, WA/Ferris HS), and Oliver Kushen (Fy., Trabuco Canyon, CA/Tesoro HS). Carson Herrick (So., Newberg, OR/Newberg HS) completed the race just 0.2 behind Kushen.
Regimbal achieved a time of 26:58.6 to place 79th. Davies was clocked at 27:11.0. Bulger registered a time of 27:14.0. Kushen ended the race in 27:29.0 and was immediately followed by Herrick in 27:29.2.
Murphy-Brown set a personal record with her time of 19:19.2 for the Willamette women's team. Her previous top 5-kilometer time was 20.28.6 during last year's Willamette Invitational. Piacsek's time in Saturday's race of 19:19.7 also set a personal record, breaking her previous mark of 21:14.9 from a year ago. Shade was timed at 19:22.8.
Winning the Women's Cardinal 5K race was Whitney Rich from, Whitman College, who was timed at 17:38.0. Zita Molnar from Point Loma Nazarene University (Calif.) placed second in 17:48.3. Hunter Storm of Portland State University was third at 18:00.7, while Grace Ritchie from University of Portland took fourth at 18:05.4. Delaney Whtie from Portland State finished fifth in 18:05.8, just 0.04 behind Ritchie.
Portland State grabbed first place in the Women's Cardinal team standings with a score of 54 (3-5-7-9-30). University of Portland took second at 86, with Humboldt State in third at 95, Eastern Washington in fourth at 101, and Embry-Riddle in fifth at 130.
Murphy-Brown, Piacsek and Shade led Willamette's team efforts in the Women's Cardinal race. Also scoring for the Bearcats were Sam Smith (Fy., Seattle, WA/Ballard HS) and Andrea Griffin (Fy., Eugene, OR/Elmira HS). Sam Smith was credited with a time of 19:36.9, while Griffin was timed at 19:45.2.
After the Cardinal races were completed the meet moved on to the Gold races, featuring teams from the NAIA, junior colleges and club teams, plus unattached runners. The Men's Gold 8-kilometer race was held first, followed by the Women's Gold 5-kilometer race.
In the Men's Gold 8K race, Stefen Rasmusson from San Diego Mesa College (Calif.) was the individual winner with a time of 24:36.1. Riley Sine from Northwest University (Wash.) earned second place at 24:40.1. Sine cross the finish line just in front of Isaiah Labra from San Diego Mesa, who was timed at 24:40.3. Also nearby was Johan Correa from Community Colleges of Spokane, who registered a time of 24:40.5 for fourth place. Tom Richardson, running unattached, placed fifth in 24:44.4.
Community College of Spokane took the Men's Gold team championship with an overall score of 48 (4-5-10-13-16). San Diego Mesa followed in second at 50, and Eastern Oregon University was third at 107. Lance Community College placed fourth at 123, and the University of Oregon Running Club was fifth at 158.
The indvidual championship in the Women's Gold 5K race went to Jolene Whiteley from Community College of Spokane with a time of 17:59.6. Michelle Herbes of Eastern Oregon was second in 18:02.8. Shiloh Najjar of Multnomah University took third in 18:20.4, and Anika Rasubala from Northwest Christian University (Ore.) was fourth in 18:22.1. Kari Elliott, who ran unattached, placed fifth at 18:32.9
Eastern Oregon won the Women's Gold team title with a score of 52 (1-4-12-16-19). Lane CC placed a strong second at 67, while Northwest Christian was third at 108. Northwest Christian held the fourth spot in the standings at 110. Red Deer College (Alberta, Can.) was fifth at 165.
Willamette's cross country teams will run again on Saturday, Oct. 19 at the University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh Kollege Town Sports Invitational. The meet, which typically features a large and strong field, will be held at the Lake Breeze Golf Course in Winneconne, Wisconsin, starting at 10:30 a.m. (CDT)/8:30 a.m. (PDT).