LAS CRUCES, N.M.-The New Mexico State University cross country team prepares to host the annual Kachina Classic on Saturday, Sept. 17, after a second-place finish at the Lori Fitzgerald Invitational last weekend.
The 2011 Kachina Classic will be held on the NM State Golf Course on Saturday, Sept. 17. The 8K men's race will begin at 8:30 a.m. and the 5K women's race will begin at 9 a.m.
The Aggies placed second at the Lori Fitzgerald Invitational on Saturday, Sept. 10. Junior Jonah Ruybalid from the men's team finished 5th overall with a time of 21:43.4 on the 6664m course and freshman Tamara Lementino from the women's team finished sixth overall with a time of 20:07.8 on the 5080m course.
"We are looking at the Kachina Classic as the first meet for the rest of the season," said assistant coach Meaghan Harkins. "It will be a good indication of how our team will look by the end of the season."
Last year in the Kachina Classic the both Aggies squads finished second overall. The men's team finished with a score of 34 points. UTEP finished first with 29 points and New Mexico finished third with 67 points. The Aggie women tallied 48 points just ahead of UNM at 50. UTEP won the meet with 36 points.
Both of the Aggies' top finishers from last year will be returning to race the event again this year. Senior Kevin Taft finished with the top time for the men's team and fourth overall with a time of 25:26.4 in the 8K and junior Camille Schultz finished with the top time for the women's team and fourth overall with a time of 17:32.7 in the 5K.
Harkins expressed her excitement for the upcoming event.
"I am super excited about this weekend," Harkins said. "The athletes are always excited with the home event and the local support they receive."