No. 11 Midwestern State gets its chance to run with the big programs Saturday at
the Rimrock Farm Collegiate Classic hosted by the University of
"I'm excited for this meet," MSU coach Koby Styles said. "The course is an historic course that has hosted some national championship meets. I've heard it's tough but you're able to run fast. That falls in pretty well with the way we train. The tougher the course, the better we run."
The 16-team field includes a pair of ranked Division I squads in No. 11 Michigan and No. 22 Toledo joining a deep grouping from the NCAA's top divisions including Air Force, Indiana, Kansas, Kansas State, Nebraska, New Mexico State, Texas Tech and UMKC.
The remainder of the field includes Hannibal-LaGrange, Haskell Indian Nations, Iowa Western CC, McPherson and the only other Division II team in Regis (Colo.).
"Going to these meets and facing some really stiff competition really sets us up for conference, regionals and nationals," Styles said.
Midwestern State's top traveling squad took a fourth-place showing two weeks ago at the Missouri Southern Stampede. The Mustangs are keenly aware of fixing its trouble area of tightening its gap time between Nos. 4 and 5.
"This squad is very different than where we were in Missouri," Styles said. "The last few weeks of workouts have gone very well. We need to be more aggressive from the start of the race and we've got to go out there and find that breaking point for each one of them and find out what we're made of."
MSU is paced by junior front runners Ashley Flores and Janel Campbell while twins Michelle and Kim Krezonoski give the Mustangs solid contributors at the Nos. 3 and 4 positions while the fifth counter remains a battle.
"The good thing about this team is that every meet there's been a different (fifth runner) emerge," Styles said. "(The top four) have been constant then we have someone step up. Right now, Maira (Salinas) is working her way up there and Tylo (Farrar) has also been working hard to get up there. The important thing is that we've got to close the gap with the top four. If we can do that, we'll shock some big programs this weekend. We haven't seen our best day and I'm excited to watch them run."
This week's travel squad includes Flores, Campbell, Michelle Krezonoski, Kim Krezonoski, Salinas, Farrar, Brittany Adams, Abigail Gonzalez, Alex Kohrs and Ana Lopez.
Midwestern State's Nadia Majed claimed Lone Star Conference Runner of the Week
honors Thursday afternoon when league officials announced the weekly
The 5-7 senior from Tulsa, Okla. clocked a season-best 5K time of 20:08.61 to take third in the Third Annual Ram Ramble last weekend in Fort Worth.
The transfer from Oklahoma Baptist led MSU's No. 2 travel squad to a 28-point showing to claim the meet championship by outdistancing the University of Dallas which finished with 35 points.
It's the third week a Midwestern runner has claimed the weekly honor. Junior front runner Ashley Flores earned the accolade for the weeks of Sep. 6 and 20.
The Mustangs maintain a No. 11 national ranking and are currently rated third in the South Central Region by the United States Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches' Association.
Midwestern State competes in the 6K Rimrock Farm Collegiate Classic hosted by the University of Kansas Saturday in Lawrence.