The Women’s Cross Country Team and new head coach David Lawrence started their season off at the Humboldt Invitational on Friday. The Seawolve women, competed against Humboldt State, Oregon Tech, and Cal State Monterey Bay at the Baywoods Golf and Country Club in Arcata, running the enduring 6k race.
Coach Lawrence had this to say about the first race, “Knocking the rust off is never an easy task, but it’s off and now we can move forward with individual and team goals.” he continued by saying “The buildup and anticipation of the first race could be nerve racking and it was for most. We have two weeks until our next meet in Southern California and I can’t wait to see the end result.”
Humboldt State came out on top in both the Women’s 6k and the Men’s 8k race, coming in first place in both events. Despite the loss for Sonoma State, the team finished out the race strong with an end result of 4th place. The Seawolves had to overcome unfamiliar weather and terrain that was different from what some of the women expected, but they pushed through and finished with solid times.
Junior Gina Rowley was injured with a pulled back muscle this time last year, when asked about the Humboldt Invitational Rowley said, “Before the race I was nervous and excited because I had never raced the Humboldt course,” she continued by saying “the last two seasons I was injured from the race. After, I was disappointed in my time, but I did my best.”
Senior, Jasmine Casillas was the top runner, finishing the 6k race first for the Seawolves. Directly behind her was freshman Ashley Mendenhall. Sophomore Alana Reyna came next with freshman Hailey Cross running in just a few seconds later. The women all did an incredible job of not only enduring the 6k race but also by finishing with impressive times.
The Cross Country team gained five new freshmen this season, one being Amanda Lewis. This was Lewis’ first race as a Seawolf and she said, “Before the race I tried to prepare myself by telling myself to just relax and to shake all my stress out” she continued by saying “After the race I felt really proud of myself for finishing and thought about how hard it was and how tired I was, but also how happy I was that I had just finished my first official 6k race!”
Amanda wasn’t the only one proud of completing the race, the entire team was excited to knock out the highly anticipated first race of the season. The team gave it their all and can only improve from this point forward.
Coach Lawrence motivated the team throughout the race and until they reached the finish line. The 6k race is a lengthy 3.7 mile competition where the athletes are pushed to their limits and can finish anywhere between 20 to 30 minutes.
Senior Bailey Stone was unable to attend the Invitational but was very impressed with her teammates. Stone said, “I think the team is great. All the girls are awesome and ready to compete this season. This season is going to be very different with a new coach, but as a team we all work together really well.”
The Seawolves will compete in their next event at the CSU San Bernardino Coyote Invitational on Saturday Sept. 21 at 8 a.m.