The women's cross country team looks to continue their strong running this weekend at the Roy Griak Invitational on the University of Minnesota Les Bolstad Golf Course.\nThe first two meets of this young season have been very successful for this season's harriers. On August 30th, the team won the Indiana Open on the IU Cross Country Course. This past weekend they finished second in the Indiana Intercollegiates, losing the top spot to rival Purdue.\nThe Hoosiers said they are optimistic for this Saturday's meet in Minneapolis. \n"To be successful this weekend, we just need to run with the confidence and composure we've been running with so far. I think that if we work together as a pack and compete, we could surprise some people," junior Audrey Giesler said.\nSophomore Mindy Peterson said the team needs to be confident, but not overconfident about this weekend. \n"We just need to go out on the course without being intimidated by the number of runners and know that we can race with all of those girls," Peterson said. "I have already heard from many of the girls that are excited about this race, so that makes me even more excited."\nThe race is the fifth of seven that will take place Saturday. Other races will include high school and Division I, II, and III teams.\nPeterson, whose season personal best 18:12 was set at the Indiana Open last weekend, was the top finisher for the Hoosiers at last year's Roy Griak Invitational with a time of 22:28.6 for the five-kilometer course.\n"The meet is not as competitive as it has been in the past, but there are still some outstanding teams that are going to be there including Michigan State, last year's Big Ten Champs, Marquette, Arizona, and Arizona State," Giesler said.\nGiesler said she hopes to move on from the mistake she made in the Hoosiers' last meet. Towards the end of the race, Giesler was in the lead, but took a wrong turn, and had to retrace her steps. This error caused her to lose her No. 1 position in the race.\n"Making that wrong turn was frustrating because as a junior on my home course, I should not have made that mistake," Giesler said. "The frustration does help serve motivation for this weekend, but I'm just really excited to see how our team performs up there. Mistakes happen, and we must move on."\nDespite her mistake, Giesler said racing well comes not only from experience, but also the support of teammates. \n"The more you're in the big meets, the more comfortable you become when the gun goes off," Giesler said. "More importantly though, it really helps having so many teammates to run with both in practice, and in the meets. When we run together, it really keeps my head in the race."\nFreshman Jessica Gall also said that the competition will be tough.\n"[the team] is so excited about this meet in Minnesota. It is a great chance for us to prove how good IU really is against some quality competition."\nGall stated that the top five runners (Peterson, Gall, Freshman Lindsay Hattendorf, Giesler, and Junior Becky Obrecht) work really well with one another in practices and races. \n"We may not be with each other every step of the way, but it is always encouraging to see teammates around and in front of me," Gall said. "It makes me strive to do better for the team"
Get stories like this in your inboxSubscribe