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2019-20 Shocker Men XC and Track & Field

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  • 2019-20 Shocker Men XC and Track & Field

    Track and Field Welcomes 2019 Signing Class

    "I am really pleased with how this recruiting class came together ultimately," said Director of Track and Field and Cross Country Steve Rainbolt. "There was a time in the winter when I was concerned with how recruiting was going. Ultimately, we finished strong, and I feel we put together a terrific group of freshman and transfers."

    The Wichita State track and field teams welcomed 31 new members to the squad Monday. There are 19 new additions to the men's team including 10 freshman, a sophomore transfer from D-11 Lindenwood, 7 juco transfers (5 of those from Cowley County CC) and 1 Englishman who will be a junior.

    Winner of the Coolest Name Award is freshman multi out of Emporia, Storm Dial.

    Don't seen anyone who will soften the loss of Rayvon Allen to OU but not really expecting that would happen.

    Last edited by 1972Shocker; August 26th, 2019, 06:15 PM.

  • #2
    2019 IHGF World Amateur Highland Games Championships: Arneson Toughs It Out for the Win

    With 13,000 spectators cheering them on at picturesque Château de Bressuire (France), an international field of heavy events athletes competed in the prestigious IHGF World Amateur Highland Games Championships and when the dust had settled, Skylar Arneson (USA) claimed the title.

    In all, this IHGF Amateur World Championships was one of the best to date, the crowds were wonderful, a total of 5 ground records were established. For Arneson it was a hard-fought battle with Nys, with Arneson crowned the new IHGF Amateur Highland Games world champion.

    Overall places
    1. Skylar Arneson (USA) 21
    2. Glenn Nys (Belgium) 23
    3. Jamie Gunn (Scotland) 29.5
    4. Murdo Masterson (Scotland ) 35
    5. Johan Longhurst (Holland) 35
    6. Joe Pocock (Canada) 52.5
    7. Svavar Sigursteinsson (Iceland) 54
    8. Stefan Kolitsch (Germany) 65.5
    9. Fabien Patheney (France) 75.5
    10. Yrjo Hamalainen (Finland) 79
    11. Maxime Billeaud (France) 79.5
    12. Tibor Kiss (Hungary) 83.5

    Congratulations Skylar. :cowbell::poster_wsu:
    Last edited by 1972Shocker; August 27th, 2019, 06:59 PM.


    • #3
      Shockers Geared Up for 71st JK Gold Classic

      The Shocker men return nearly everyone on the roster from a year ago.

      Wichita State's men's squad brings back six of its top seven from the AAC Championships. The only loss was Pedro Montoya who ran out of eligiblity.

      Zack Penrod was the low stick at the AAC Championships in 2018 and had great seasons on the track to bolster his momentum coming into the cross country season. Penrod won the Mile indoors and the 1,500 meters outdoors at the AAC conference meets.

      Clayton Duchatschek also returns for the Shocker men. He was the best Wichita State runner at last year's Midwest Regional and at Pre-Nationals. Duchatschek is coming off a redshirt during the 2019 outdoor campaign.

      Ethan Kossover was also in Wichita State's top three at the AAC Championships and Midwest Regional. Kossover barely missed out on all-conference honors with a fourth-place finish in the 3,000-meter steeplechase at the outdoor conference meet.

      The Shockers hope to improve on last year's fourth-place conference finish with a strong veteran presence.


      • #4
        Regarding the race times there are a couple things to keep in mind. XC races can be run at varying distances that, for the men, generally range from 4K on the short end up to 10K. Conference Championship races are usually 8K races and NCAA regional and championship races are 10K races. The JK Classic is typically the 1st race of the season for the Shocks and I think they run the shorter 6K race as a way to "ease" into the season. Obviously, you aren't looking to peak at the start of the season. Also keep in mind that race times in cross country meets can vary significantly depending on weather conditions, the condition of the racing surface and the terrain of the course.

        That said I think the times put up by the Shocker men were quite respectable. The Shocks had 5 runners finish under 19 minutes and all 5 within a 16.6 second range. The top 5 finishers for each team factor into the team scoring. The Shockers top 5 finishers (with comments about their times) were as follows:

        1. Ben Flowers (18:38.2) - A 6K PR for Ben who has battled anxiety problems. He did not run in the JK Classic last year but in 2017 he ran a 19:02.7.
        3. (2nd in scoring) Jed Helker (18:47.8) - This is Jed's 1st official 6K time. He ran unattached in this race last year with a time of 19:30.3. A very nice improvement this year.
        4. (3rd in scoring) Cory Landon (18:48.8) - A 6K PR. Cory's previous best in this race was a 18:57.5.
        5. (4th in scoring) Adam Moore (18:50.2) - First race as a Shocker for the Junior from England.
        7. (6th in scoring) Zack Penrod (18:54.8) - Zack's PR in a 6K XC race is 18:41.0

        The Shockers team score was 16 points (1+2+3+4+6). This meet was essentially an triangular with Kansas State and Emporia State.

        Shocker junior Ethan Kossover finished 2nd in 18:43.2 but was running unattached and therefore doesn't factor into the scoring. That would indicate he may be redshirting this season. Looks like this was Ethan's 1st 6K XC race. Redshirt freshman Bryce Merriman finshed 8th overall in 19:02.2 in what appears to be his 1st collegiate 6K XC race. Jr. Clayton Duchatschek also looks to be redshirting and finished 13th in 19:18.3. Clayton ran a 18:59.7 in this race last year. Of course, redshirts can always be pulled.

        I would think Coach Hunter is probably pretty pleased with these performances at this early stage in the season especially the tight grouping of his top 5 guys (top 6 if you count Ethan Kossover). Obviously, they want to be in peak condition and readiness for the AAC Championships on November 1st in Memphis. Till then everything is training and conditioning for that.
        Last edited by 1972Shocker; September 8th, 2019, 07:21 PM.


        • #5
          RH: Flowers Wants To Share His Story

          Shocker junior Ben Flowers working on overcoming performance anxiety. Sounds a little bit like the issues Samajae Haynes-Jones had to deal with.

          Seems to be working at this point as Ben kicks off his junior year with a win and a solid time at the JK Classic.

          He points to changes he made after dropping out of an October race during last season because he didn't eat properly.

          He talked with Wichita State's athletic training staff and told them he knew he needed help. With the help of doctors, he started a routine of meditation and visualization that calmed and focused him.

          Interestingly, Ben is a psychology major.


          • #6
            Here are Shocker Assstant Director of Track and Field John Wise's thoughts on the Shocker's season opening performance at the JK Gold Classic:

            Early season cross country meets aren’t as important as the ones later in the season but they give some great data as to how well a team has trained over the summer. If the JK Gold is any indication, the WSU athletes put in some great work in preparation for this year. The Shockers dominated both the men’s and women’s races Saturday in Augusta, KS, and Coach Hunter was pleased with how the teams performed. Running in a pack was the goal of the day and WSU executed that to near perfection. Including WSU’s redshirt athletes, the Shocker men finished 1-2-3-4-5-7-8 with only one Kansas St athletes in that mix. The women went 1-2-3-4-6 with only former All-American Tonya Nero breaking up the top-5. Comparing to previous 4k (women) and 6k (men) races there were 16 new PR’s even though the conditions were warm and humid. Juniors Ben Flowers and Winny Koskei took home the individual titles. Flowers led then men’s 6k race in 18:38 while Koskei won the women’s 4k race in 13:48.


            • #7
              Shocker XC have their first high-level race fo the 2019 season as they head to Eugene, Oregon on Satuday (September 28th).


              The Field
              The Shockers take on a loaded field in Oregon at the Bill Dellinger Invitational. BYU highlights the field. The Cougars have the No. 2 men's team and the No. 6 women's team. The sixth-ranked Portland men and 10th-ranked Oregon women round out the field of four top-10 nationally ranked squads. All in all, 17 teams who are either ranked or have received votes in the USTFCCCA National Rankings are in the field at Oregon.

              Coach Hunter on the Meet
              On his goals and expectations for the meet in Oregon
              "Our goals are to run fast. We have two teams that have the ability to be fast teams throughout. We might not be as deep as some other teams around the country, but that's the nature of how we do things and recruit here at Wichita State for our overall goals. This group has the ability, if they stay healthy throughout the year, to be two of the best teams in school history. Given that fact, we're hoping to go in there and make some noise against those ranked teams. Hopefully it'll help us move up in the rankings as we go through the year."

              On the course in Eugene
              "I have been out there a few times. The course has always been extremely flat. There's never a bump in it. That doesn't mean it runs fast. It typically does, but if it rains, that can change the way the course runs."

              JK Gold champion Ben Flowers and other top finishers from the Shocker men's home meet will run in the men's 8K race.

              Should provide a really good measurin stick.


              • #8
                As a team the Shocks finished 11th out of 14 teams in Eugene but it was a very tough field. Ben Flowers led the Shocks with a 37th place finishing with a time of 24:19.2 over the 8K course.

                Overall I think the Shockers did pretty well.

                37. Jr. Ben Flowers - 24:19.2 PR
                78. Sr. Zack Penrod - 24:58.9
                79. Jr. Ethan Kossover - 24:59.1 PR
                89. R-Fr. Jed Helker - 25:08.8 PR
                91. Jr. Adam Moore - 25:09.8 PR
                115. Jr. Cory Landon - 25:38.2 PR
                123. R-Fr. Bryce Merriman - 25:50.5 PR
                128. Fr. Britte Magnuson - 25:57.6 PR
                134. Jr. Alex Moen - 26:16.0

                Only 50 seconds separated the Shocks top 5 guys and only 11 seconds separated the 4 runners who finished behind Ben Flowers. 7 out of 9 guys set new PR's for the 8K distance.



                • #9


                  • #10
                    Shocker Cross Country Takes on Pre-Nationals

                    Meet Notes

                    The Basics

                    • The Shockers send a host of quality runners to Terre Haute, Indiana, for Pre-Nationals on Saturday, October 19th. This meet is hosted every year by the school who is hosting the NCAA Cross Country Championships. Indiana State is the host this year.
                    • For the Shocker men, Ben Flowers showed improvement throughout the race. Flowers finished the race in 37th, but made his way 40 spots up the field throughout the course of the race.
                    • Behind Flowers, two pairs of Shocker finished close to one another. Zack Penrod and Ethan Kossover finished back-to-back in 78th and 79th. Jed Helker and Adam Moore also finished in close proximity in 89th and 91st.

                    FOLLOW THE MEET
                    Fans can follow along on Twitter at @GoShockersTFXC for updates. A recap will be posted to as well as full PDF results. Live results can be found at

                    Meet Schedule
                    Both Wichita State squads have been placed in the Blue races. The women's Blue 6K race kicks off at 10 a.m. Central time. The men's Blue 8K starts at 10:35 a.m. Central time.

                    Coach Hunter on the Meet
                    "Every time we get into this time of the year, we get a lot done in terms of knowing we're at and where a lot of other teams are at. After the weekend, we're obviously going to focus on conference, but it's a great indicator of where we stand. I take the entire year and I can evaluate what's happening (with other teams) unless they're hiding someone. Having the chance to run this week is also a chance to qualify for the national meet. If we don't go to these meets like Oregon or Pre-Nats, we don't have much of a chance in this system to make it. We're thankful to have the opportunity. The experience is going to be invaluable when we get to the regional meet."

                    On team dynamics
                    "(They) obviously (enjoy each other's company). Both the guys and girls teams. It's very obvious to me in practice. I think if you just listen to the athletes and what they have to say, I'm surrounded by people (who are good people). That's why our team has been improving. We've had a great culture over the course of the past few years."

                    In Full Bloom
                    Ben Flowers has emerged as the leader for the Wichita State men's cross country squad in 2019.
                    • Flowers started his year with an individual title at the JK Gold Classic. He won the race in 18:38.2. Flowers' performance was the high point of a great day for the Shocker men. Wichita State won the team title and put six in the top eight to claim the team title.
                    • Flowers proved his performance wasn't a fluke when he ran at the Bill Dellinger Invitational. Flowers finished in 37th in a field full of ranked teams. He moved up a total of 40 spots throughout the race, and clocked in at 24:19.2 in his first 8K of 2019.

                    The AAC XC Championships will be in Memphis on Friday, November 1st.


                    • #11
                      Shocker Men Head to Memphis of the AAC XC Championships

                      The Basics

                      The Shocker men finished fourth at this meet a year ago, but bring back all but one of their top seven from last year's conference meet. Ben Flowers has stepped in as a leader for the Shockers, but the other Shocker men have shown the capability to run with Flowers. They'll need a large pack of yellow and black toward the front to do well.

                      Teamwork Makes the Dream Work

                      The Shocker men have proven they have the capability to run together all year long.

                      Ben Flowers has been the low stick all year, including a victory at the JK Gold Classic, but the Shockers behind him have finished close together.

                      At Pre-Nationals, the Shockers had a spread of 48.2, meaning the fifth-fastest runner came in only 48.2 seconds after the Shockers' low stick crossed the line. At the Bill Dellinger Invitational, the Shockers' spread came in at 50 seconds.

                      Coach Kirk Hunter has said the Shocker men can run with each other, which has proven to be true, but they will need to run together near the front of the field in Memphis to take down sixth-ranked Tulsa.

                      Meet Schedule

                      The men's 8K race kicks off the day at 10 a.m. with the women's race following it at 10:50 a.m. There will also be an awards ceremony at about 11:40 a.m.

                      The championships can be viewed live on Facebook via the American Digital Network.

                      The weather in Memphis for Friday will be cool (probably between 40-45 during race time) but sunny with winds at only 3 mph and relatively low humidity for Memphis. Sounds like pretty good conditions for a cross country race. It is supposed to rain beginning around 4:00 this afternnon and continue through 6:00 am Thursday. Might get a few hours of sun late Thursday. Hopefully, the course will dry out a bit by race time although IIRC correctly the course was drenched during last year's AAC Championship so maybe the Shocks are good mudders.


                      • #12
                        RH: Wichita State Women Among Favorites

                        Looks like Tulsa will be the favorite in both the men's and women's races in Memphis tomorrow. Tulsa has won five straight men's conference titles and is ranked No. 6 nationally and second in the Midwest Region. Wichita State is No. 11 in the region. Temple is third in the Mid-Atlantic and Houston seventh in the South Central. The Shocks are a real long shot to win but hopefully they can at least match last year's 4th place finish. The key for the Shocker men is to run well as a pack.,


                        • #13
                          The Tulsa me looks like they won their 9th straight team title easily. The had 5 guys finish in a tight pack at the front of the field.

                          The Shocks on the other hand looked to be well pack and pretty spread out. Not sure how they will finish but it didn't really look a real strong performance.

                          Sounds like the course is a bit muddy and soft in places from recent rain.

                          A Cincinnati senior, Aaron Bienenfeld, was the winner of the race but Tulsa finished 2-3-4-5-6. The Shockers Ben Flowers had a good race finishing 7th.

                          Teamwise, Tulsa won in dominating fashion with 20 points followed by Temple (68), UConn (110), Cincinnati (116) and the Shockers (118) in 5th.

                          Not a terrible showing by the guys. Would not have taken that much to have finished 3rd or 4th,.
                          Last edited by 1972Shocker; November 1st, 2019, 12:02 PM.


                          • #14
                            Ben Flowers, a junior, became the 1st Shocker to ever earn AAC XC All-Conference honors with his 7th place finish. Congratulations Ben.


                            • #15