Gillick Captures First Place, HSU Cross Country Excels in Muddy Beaver Classic
CORVALLIS, Ore. -- Despite muddy and rainy conditions at Avery Park Friday afternoon, Humboldt State freshman Tatiana Gillick captured a first place finish in the Beaver Classic. The Lumberjack women’s and men’s cross country teams followed Gillick’s example and put together outstanding finishes as they placed third and fourth overall, respectively.
The Corvallis weather conditions were poor and forced the Jacks to deal with rainy conditions all day leading up to race time. Avery Park’s grass surface was soaked and water saturated the ground as the Green and Gold took the starting line.
“I told the teams before the event started to throw the times out the window and run for position,” said Pesch. “In all my years running cross country and coaching, these were some of the toughest conditions I have seen.”
Gillick posted her best collegiate finish since the Jacks opened 2014 at the Humboldt State Invitational in mid September. She beat out top Division I competition from Portland and Portland State to take the top spot with a 22:03.8 time.
Sophomore Kori Gilley followed Gillick’s lead and earned another top 10 finish, as she placed ninth overall (22:19.8). Junior Imogene Carson (22:42.5) and freshman Annie Roberts (23:32.2) rounded out the HSU women’s top 25 finishers with 13th and 24th place rankings, respectively. Freshman Giovanna Romo compiled the squad’s fifth-best finish, a time of 23:38.3.
The Green and Gold women finished third in the team standings with 63 points. HSU finished behind second place Portland (61) and first place Portland State (43).
A rash of recent injuries did not slow the men’s cross country team and neither did poor course conditions following the women’s race.
“When you are the second group on a course (like the one our teams ran on), it will be all muddy, chewed up, eaten and spit out again,” said Pesch.
Junior Omar Padilla led the Jacks’ men with a 16th place finish (26:22.6). Freshman Dustyn Salomon finished seven places behind and ranked 23rd overall (26:41.1). Senior Ryan Lawler (26:47.2), junior Mario Castillo-Urbina (27:03.6) and junior CM April (27:16.8) wrapped up the top five finishers on the men’s side for HSU.
“The teams did really well,” said Pesch. “I am really proud of how our teams stood up to tough DI competition in Portland, Portland State, and even some Oregon State runners. We also face great NAIA teams from Oregon.”
HSU travels to San Bernardino, Calif., on Saturday, Nov. 8, to take park in the California Collegiate Athletic Association Conference Championships