FALCON HEIGHTS, Minnesota – Junior Jennica Redd led BYU women’s cross country to a 9th-place finish at the Roy Griak Invitational hosted by the University of Minnesota on Saturday.
"Going into it we all knew we had to be conservative and patient at the beginning and then come on strong at the end," BYU's Jennica Redd said. "For the most part, we all went out pretty slow and were patient the first half of the race, and then especially the last 2K we all picked up a lot. That was basically our race plan."
The Griak course is known to be very physically challenging with many hills and curves. Couple that with the talented field, and it becomes crucial to stick to race strategy. Nobody did that better than Redd Saturday.
"I was just being really patient the whole first half, I was really comfortable," Redd said. "Once I hit the 4K mark I really picked it up and finished as hard as I could. The first 3K, Carrie Jube and I were probably in 100th place and in the last 2K we passed many girls."
Redd, of Orem, was the top finisher for the Cougars placing 28th overall, completing the 6K course with a time of 22:06.0.
"I was really happy with my performance," Redd said. "I felt like I raced smart especially coming off the Autumn Classic. This was a great confidence builder."
Andrea Nelson Harrison and Carrie Jube crossed the line right behind Redd finishing with times of 22:07.0 and 22:08.0, respectively. Harrison's time was good for 30th and Jube's time put her at 31st overall.
The meet was the first major invitational of the season with seven ranked teams and 37 teams competing overall. BYU beat one of those ranked teams, Butler, who came in to the meet ranked 11th.
The Cougars will compete again next Friday, Oct. 3, at the Notre Dame Invitational in South Bend, Indiana.
PROVO, Utah – BYU women's cross country will race against several top programs this Saturday at the Roy Griak Invitational hosted by the University of Minnesota.
“The Griak Invitational is one of the oldest, traditional races in the country,” BYU head coach Patrick Shane said. “It has always been a premier invitational.”
The field includes 37 total teams and seven of those teams, Michigan State (3), Iowa State (9), Butler (11), Boise State (20), Vanderbilt (22), Minnesota (28) and North Carolina (30), are included in the USTFCCCA’s latest top 30 rankings.
Carrie Jube, a junior from Provo, knows this will be the toughest challenge the team has faced so far this season, but is looking forward to the task.
“These away meets are good for our team,” Jube said. “They are good learning experiences for us. The better competition allows us to qualify for nationals.”
It is important the Cougars run well because this will be the first meet of the year where teams can begin acquiring points toward qualifying for the NCAA championships.
“Inevitably there will be nerves,” Jube said. “I try not to think about it though. I think of it as just another race. I know how to run and what my abilities are so I tell myself I’m ready.”
“As a team, we hope to beat some of the best teams there,” Jube said. “We want to show what we can do and earn some points for nationals.”
The women’s 6K race begins at 1:10 p.m. CDT at the Les Bolstad Cross Country Course in Falcon Heights, Minnesota. After the race, meet results will be posted here.