Helmer Announces 2010 Schedule for Indiana Cross Country
July 15, 2010
BLOOMINGTON, Ind. - Indiana will host one cross country meet this fall at the IU Championship Cross Country Course and the IU men's and women's squads will pay visits to two fellow Big Ten schools, director and head coach Ron Helmer has announced. The Hoosiers will open the season at home with the Indiana Open on Sat., Sept. 11.
The Indiana Intercollegiates will be run on Purdue's home course in West Lafayette on Sept. 17, and two weeks later, the Hoosiers will visit Madison, Wis., for a preview of the Big Ten Championship course at the Wisconsin adidas Invitational on Oct. 2. The Hoosiers will close out the regular season in Arkansas, running at the Chile Pepper Cross Country Festival in Fayetteville on Oct. 17. The Hoosiers will head back to Madison looking to dethrone the host Badgers, who have won 11 straight conference titles on the men's side. The championship season continues with the NCAA Great Lakes Regionals in Rochester, Mich., and concludes at the familiar Indiana State Championship course in Terre Haute.
"This schedule will be great to prepare our student-athletes for the championship schedule as well as the indoor and outdoor track and field seasons," Helmer said. "Our home course is as tough as any in the country, so hosting a meet is a great benefit to our team. I'm also very happy to get the chance to preview the Big Ten Championships course in a high-level meet in October."
The 2009 season saw the Indiana women advance to the NCAA Championships as a team for the first time since 2004. The Hoosiers return all but one runner from that squad's top five, Wendi Robinson.
Robinson's shoes will be tough to fill, but rising-senior Sarah Pease led the way for the Hoosiers at the 2009 Great Lakes Regional and returns after her 2009-10 season saw her earn All-Region and All-Big Ten nods in cross country and All-America and All-Big Ten honors in track and field. Rising-junior Chelsea Blanchard also earned All-Region honors in 2009.
The Hoosier men will look to avenge a disappointing end to the 2009 cross country season. The team, which was ranked among the nation's top-20 over the course of the season, finished fourth at Big Tens and fourth at the NCAA Regional, missing out on a bid into the NCAA Championships. The IU men return the entire 2009 squad, including three All-Big Ten honorees in cross country and two All-Region selections.
Leading the way will be 2009 NCAA individual qualifier Andrew Poore. Poore, a junior-to-be, backed up his NCAA qualification in cross country with All-America honors during the indoor season and another NCAA trip outdoors. Rising sophomore Zach Mayhew was the top Hoosier at the 2009 Big Ten meet in cross country and fellow sophomore Andy Bayer had a breakout indoor season that saw him earn two All-America certificates, including a third-place finish in the 3,000m at NCAAs.
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