Notre Dame Fighting Irish - Official Athletics Website

Men's And Women's Cross Country Announces Its Presence With Authority

Oct. 5, 2001

Complete Results

The University of Notre Dame men’s cross country team has been making a statement throughout the entire season. The Irish men, who wield enough depth on their roster to dominate meets with their “B” team, are ranked fifth in the country and have done nothing so far this season to refute that high ranking.

At a very wet and soggy Notre Dame Invitational on Friday, the women’s team also showed just how talented they are.

Both teams ran to dominating victories at the Invitational, the men taking the “Blue” division title with 28 points (landing all five scoring runners in the top 17) and the women coasting to victory in their “Blue” division with 58 points (Michigan was the closest competitor with 104 points).

Women’s head coach Tim Connelly knew all along that his runners had the ability to put together this type of performance, but was unable to enter his full roster in a race this season.

Freshman Lauren King, a talented prospect who finished 26th at the World Junior Cross Country Championships last year, had not competed in the first three meets of the season because of a long Canadian track and field season that runs into the middle of the summer. She has spent the last few weeks adjusting from a track to a cross country course.

The Toronto, Ontario, native made a huge splash in her collegiate debut today – in more ways than one. A steady drizzle dampened the Notre Dame cross country course, but King sloshed through the terrain in 17:20 to win her first individual collegiate cross country individual in her first collegiate cross country race.

Junior Jen Handley was not far behind the Irish rookie, finishing third in 17:28. Sophomore Megan Johnson came across the finish line next in 10th place, followed by freshman Christi Arnerich (20th) and junior Jennifer Fibuch (24th).

“Our four and five runners did a great job today,” Connelly said.

“They didn’t get a very good start, but just kept in the race and really showed what they are capable of doing.”

The men’s team continued on its pace toward a high finish at the national meet this season with another impressive victory in its varsity race on Friday. Senior Luke Watson became the first harrier since 1978 (Marc Hunter, Cleveland State) to win the Notre Dame Invitational two years in a row with a first-place finish in 24:06. Nineteen seconds behind Watson was senior Ryan Shay, who claimed his fourth National Catholic individual title just two weeks ago on the same course.

Notre Dame’s other top runners continued the pattern the Irish laid out two weeks ago at the National Catholic, sophomore Todd Mobley (who ran side-by-side with Watson and Shay for most of the race) strengthened his break-out cross country season by taking third place. Marc Striowski battled over the final 50 yards to make for a fourth-place finish, but Utah State’s Mitch Zandel just edged the Irish senior at the finish line. It is the second consecutive meet that the Irish top runners have finished 1-2-3-5.

Notre Dame’s fifth runner across the line was senior Sean Zanderson, who ran his best race of the season to take 17th place in 25:00.

In other action on Friday, the Notre Dame “B” team claimed its second straight race victory by winning the “Gold” division race, led by Mario Bird’s second-place finish. The women’s “B” team finished fourth in the “Gold” division race.

Men’s Blue Team Results:

1. Notre Dame, 28

2. Utah State, 47

3. Indiana, 115

4. Loyola Chicago, 142

5. Butler, 190

6. Northern Iowa, 209

7. Ohio State, 235

8. Illinois State, 244

9. Wisconsin – Osh Kosh, 254

10. Montana, 267

11. Western Michigan, 281

12. Truman State, 287

13. Bowling Green, 319

14. Edinboro, 339

15. Ball State, 366

16. Calvin College, 393

17. Valparaiso, 434

18. Cal Poly Pomona, 507

Women’s Blue Team Results:

1. Notre Dame, 58

2. Michigan, 104

3. William & Mary, 110

4. Ball State, 144

5. Miami (Ohio), 148

6. Butler, 148

7. Loyola Chicago, 163

8. Indiana, 173

9. Western Michigan, 262

10. Utah State, 270

11. Montana, 275

12. Mississippi State, 317

13. Edinboro, 319

14. Illinois State, 322

15. Eastern Michigan, 365

16. Northern Iowa, 446

17. Northwestern “B”, 547

Full and complete results are available on the official Notre Dame athletic website at: