The Northwestern Oklahoma State University men and women’s cross country teams competed in the Chili Pepper Festival in Fayetteville, Arkansas, on Saturday. Both the men and women did well at the meet. The women placed 36 out of 45 teams beating conference foe Ouachita Baptist. The Lady Rangers all ran a personal best,which set a new season’s team average of 21:29:18. The Lady Rangers were led by junior Kayla Gourley, who clocked in a time of 20:21.
Freshman Kendy Salinas came in after Gourley with a time of 21:12. Junior Maren Wicker finished with a time of 21:51. Rounding out the scoring for the Lady Rangers was sophomore Clara O’Connor who finished at 21:59 and sophomore Melissa Chavez with a completed time of 22:01. Freshman Madison Herrera ended the race with a time of 24:36.
The Ranger men also had a successful weekend. The Rangers finished 35 out of 41 teams and beat Arkansas Monticello.
They also set some records individually. Junior Clayton Fletcher led the way for the Rangers and recorded a time of 34:24. This is second best time in Northwestern history. Freshman Ben Ivory also got himself into the record books, coming in with a time of 37:00 to put him at sixth all time in Ranger history.
Ben Ivory is a freshman agriculture education major from Maldrow, Oklahoma. Ivory made his mark early in the Ranger
record books. Ivory said his preparation had come early in the summer and he came into the season with a good base.
“I know for myself, I have never been in better shape than I am right now,” Ivory said. “Coach Lancaster has done her best to put us in position to succeed.” Ivory said setting the record felt really great. He said it made him reflect back on all the work he had done and that it was worth it. He said he and his team must continue to prepare for the upcoming runs by pushing each other in practice and races. Ivory said his major goal for the season is to make an 8k under 28 minutes.
The men and women will next compete in Fort Hays, Kansas at Fort Hays State University on Oct. 7.