By Natalie Wise, Vikes Communications
October 5, 2012, VICTORIA, B.C. – The University of Victoria Vikes men’s and women’s cross country teams are travelling to Bellingham, Wash. to compete in the 39th annual Western Washington University Invitational this weekend.
The men will be racing the 10K while the women will be competing in the 6-km event. The event plays host to 16 teams, among which include Canadian counterparts the University of British Columbia and Trinity Western University. Alaska Anchorage is the two-time defending champion in both the men’s and the women’s divisions while the Vikes placed second in these events last year.
Sending a team of 20 athletes, the Vikes are looking to better last year’s success while at the same time giving some of their new recruits the opportunity to compete.
Amongst the Vikes men travelling to Bellingham is 2011 Canada West Rookie of the Year Ryan Cassidy (Grande-Digue, NB), coming off of a first place finish in the St. Martin’s Invitational two weeks ago. Additionally, 2011 Canada West athlete of the year Dylan Haight (Victoria, BC) will be racing in Vikes colours alongside Canada West First Team and Second Team All-Stars Josh Clouthier (Nanaimo, BC) and Doug Oxland (Nanaimo, BC) and fifth-year veteran Kyle Irvine (Smithers, BC). Patrick Psotka (Victoria, B.C.), Thomas Riva (Qualicum, BC), Karl Robertson (Leduc, AB), Forrest Simpson (Nanaimo, B.C.), and Cody Therrien (Victoria, B.C.) round out the Vikes’ men’s contingent.
Coming off of the heels of a second place finish in the St. Martin’s Invitational, University of Calgary-transfer Madeline MacDonald (Calgary, AB) will be racing for the Vikes’ women this weekend with veteran teammates Maureen McCulligh (Campbell River, BC), Riley McQueen (Calgary, Alta.), Jenna Van Vliet (Calgary, AB), Kendra Pomfret (Roberts Creek, BC) and Rachel Francois (St. Albert, AB), as well as rookies Emma Bibault (High River, AB) Alison Hooper (Victoria, BC), and Emma Lujan (Penticton, BC).
The Western Washington University Invitational men’s 10-km race begins at 10:00 a.m., Oct. 6, while the women’s 6-km event begins at 11:00 a.m.