The Texas State men’s and women’s cross country teams showed improvement from last season’s results upon returning to San Marcos from the Southland Conference Championships last weekend.
The men finished sixth and the women finished eighth overall.
The Bobcats progressed from last season’s SLC meet where the men placed ninth and the women took an eighth-place finish.
Steffanie Armstrong, nutrition and foods junior, placed in the top-10 finishers to make the all-conference team although the women did not place higher from last year’s team finish.
Coach Grigori Viniar was proud of Armstrong for showing others she is one of the SLC’s top runners.
“Steffanie made a huge jump up and placed herself at the very top of the SLC distance field,” Viniar said.
Armstrong completed the six-kilometer race in 21:59 to place ninth for the team.
“Finishing in the top 10 and making all-conference was my goal from the beginning of the season, so it felt great to accomplish what I set out for,” Armstrong said.
Sandra Venegas, exercise and sports science junior, came in second for the Bobcats with a time of 23:05 to place 30th.
Other scorers for the Bobcats include Rachel Melton, exercise and sports science freshman, Michelle Jones, anthropology freshman and Esperanza Lopez, undecided sophomore, who finished in 23:17, 23:36 and 24:12, respectively.
Viniar was pleased with the finishes of newcomers Melton and Jones.
“I see very good progress in the performance of our freshmen women,” Viniar said. “Both our freshmen, Rachel Melton and Michelle Jones, handle the new longer distance very well and helped the team a lot. Unfortunately, our second leg last year, Espy Lopez, did not feel good, and our team placed the same place like they got last year.
Stephen F. Austin took the women’s title with 34 points, placing four runners in the top 10 and all five scorers in the top 15.
Texas A&M-Corpus Christi and McNeese State followed in second and third place, respectively.
Jonathan Hernandez, chemistry senior, and Michael Morris, biology junior, led the Bobcat men, finishing neck-and-neck to lead Texas State to a sixth-place finish.
Hernandez finished first for the Bobcats with a time of 25:37 to place 12th while Morris came in 13th, crossing the finish line in 25:38.
Hernandez was excited about the way he ran after being injured last season.
“I felt really good about my finish and was very pleased with the way I ran,” Hernandez said. “My goal was to finish top 20 coming off a year’s absence due to injury. It worked out well.”
Completing the team scores for the men were Matt Novak, exercise and sports science senior, and Michael Richards, political science senior, with a time of 27:37.
Lamar was victorious in the men’s division, finishing with 38 points followed by McNeese State and Texas-San Antonio.