Broncos Geared Up for Roger Curran Invitational

What's Happening - The Boise State University cross country teams kick-off their 2010 season this Saturday (Sept. 11) at the Roger Curran Invitational. The meet will be hosted by Northwest Nazarene University and held at West Park in Nampa, Idaho.

Meet Specifics - The women will race a 4-kilometer distance, set to start at 12:15 pm, while the men race at 12:45 pm over a 6-kilometer course. The meet will include Boise State, Northwest Nazarene, College of Idaho, Treasure Valley Community College and Eastern Oregon.

A Look at Boise State:
     ● Last Time at the Roger Curran: Last season the Bronco men came away with the Roger Curran Invitational team title, while the women placed second. Kevin Higgs returns as the 2009 men's individual champion.

     ● About the Broncos: The Broncos welcome 12 men and 32 women to the 2010 roster, four newcomers to the men's side and 16 to the women's.

2010 Season Preview:
     ● Overall Outlook: The 2010 Boise State cross country season is just around the corner and the Broncos are optimistic of the upcoming season. The men's team has 12 members while the women have added a lot of depth to the squad, welcoming 32 women to the 2010 team.

Not only are the Broncos beefing up the roster, but they are boosting the schedule as well to have the opportunity to compete against more difficult teams.

The team opens their season on Sept. 11 at the Roger Curran Invitational, a meet hosted by Northwest Nazarene University. The Broncos continue their schedule in the Treasure Valley on Sept. 25 at the Bob Firman Invitational held at Eagle Island State Park. In addition, cross country coach Brad Wick has added a new meet to the schedule, the Roy Griak Invitational, also held on Sept. 25.

"The September 25 weekend we will split our squad with some going to the Roy Griak Invitational and some of the team competing in the Bob Firman Invite," explained Wick. "The Roy Griak Invite will give our team a great chance to run against some nationally ranked teams and will be a good marker of how strong our team will be this season."

The Broncos continue on to the Charles Bowels Invitational on Oct. 2 in Salem, Ore., followed by the Oct. 16 Santa Clara Bronco Invite in Santa Clara, Calif.

"The Bronco Invite has added more teams to the competition this year and it will be another great test for our team heading into the Western Athletic Conference Championships," said Wick.

Closing out the regular season is the College of Idaho Coyote Invite on Oct. 21, followed by the WAC Championships on Oct. 30 in Moscow, Idaho. From there postseason competition begins with the NCAA West Region Championships on Nov. 13 and the NCAA National Championships slated for Nov. 22 to close out the 2010 schedule.

     ● Boise State Women: The Bronco women's cross country squad welcomes back 12 returnees as well as 20 newcomers to this season's roster. Heading up the crew will be four seniors: Alexandria Bell, Carly Gerard, Layna Oyervides and Breanne Whitlock. The roster is also made up of seven juniors, five sophomores and 16 freshmen.

"I am really looking forward to getting the first few meets under our belts to see where the team is at against competition," said Wick. "They have been doing really well in our fall training, but until we actually compete, we're not certain of where we are at."

There are a handful of athletes looking to make an impact on the team this season, many coming from the large freshmen class.

"Carly Gerard is ready for a great senior season," said Wick. "She is coming into the season in great shape and ready to go. We also have a fantastic freshman class as well as some newcomers to the roster."

Sarah Bisterfeldt and Jamie Knapp add depth to the team after the pair competed in track and field this past season, but enter the cross country arena for the first time. The Broncos will also look to freshmen Emma Bates, Erin McLaughlin, Marisa VanderMalle and Shannon Moskowitz for immediate impact to the top-seven runners. Coach Wick also anticipates that by the end of the season freshmen Tessa Murray, Alyssa Boucher, Lauren Lucas and Rici Morrill could be contenders for the top-seven runners.

     ● Boise State Men: The Boise State men's cross country team welcomes back eight returnees and welcomes four newcomers to the roster. The men have four seniors this season, including Kevin Higgs, Sawyer Bosch, Scott Foley and transfer Brad Bogden.

"Sawyer Bosch is a standout returnee and is looking strong entering the season," said Wick.

Wick also welcomes back standout sophomore Jeff Howard as well as junior Brian Pierre who will have a major impact on the team's top-seven runners.

"Jeff Howard will be a definite leader to the team this season," said Wick. "I am also looking forward to having Brian Pierre, Scott Foley and Kevin Higgs play big factors this season."

Newcomers to the team include transfer Bogden, as well as freshmen Andrew Booth, Drew O'donoghue-McDonald and Allan Schroeder.

"Bogden along with Schroeder and O'donoghue-McDonald will be major role players this season," said Wick.

With the returning talent, as well as the added depth and new team members the men's and women's teams look to have a very successful 2010 season.

"This is our last year in the WAC and we would like to go out with a bang," exclaimed Wick. "I think we can compete for titles on both the men's and women's sides. We have the pieces to do that this year."

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