The Denver Track Club was full of anticipation prior to the 2016 Roadrunner Invitational. We had a very strong performance at Colorado College, and planned to do the same this weekend until the top-ranked University of Colorado (CU Buffs) showed up.
Our goal for the women’s 6k was to disrupt the lead pack of CU runners, and deny them from sweeping all of the top positions. This effort was led by Kirsten Lake who was the Colorado College Invite champion three weeks ago. Kirsten fought hard but began to fade early on from a spell of dizziness, and was forced to retire. Fortunately we had Meghan Curran who quickly took over and led the team with a 6th place finish in 22:17.6. Next to finish was Sophie Galleher who ran aggressively in our battle with the Buffs. Her aggressive strategy paid off because she was able to beat Samantha Barela of Johnson & Wales University for the first time (23:54)! Amy DeSeyn made a huge improvement since our last 6k! She improved her time by three seconds while her previous competitors all slowed down (24:47)! Kate McLaughlin made her DTC debut in 26:14 which put her within striking distance of her 800m peers. Adrienne Boyd and Jacquelyn Myrin both made great progress at the Roadrunner Invitational by improving their pace by 10 seconds per mile (26:47 & 27:26 respectively)! Our newcomer Kelly Stritzinger ran this meet as a time trial, but was able to beat 7 college athletes during our outing (32:49)! Overall our women placed second in the non-Division II category behind the University of Colorado.
Our men’s team has been through a lot this year, but we are back in the game! The men’s effort was led by Naamn Tewelde who had command of the race during the first three miles, but retired early because of chest pain. Josh Stewart raced cross country for the first time this weekend and placed 10th in the non-Division II category (28:24)! Behind Josh Steward was Dylan Anderson who complained of dizziness during the course and was also forced to retire. Ryan Parker ran a smooth race that concluded with an impressive sprint to the finish that closed the gap between himself and a faster group of competitors (29:02). Andrew Halverson and Solomon Argaw both started the race at blistering paces, but later settled into a slower rhythm (29:38 & 30:47 respectively).
Although many of things did not go as planned, with three scratches and three DNF’s, we are more than impressed with the progress that our athletes are making. Great job Denver!