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Women's Cross Country/Track and Field

October 19, 2005

Eagles looking to take home titles

EVANSVILLE, Ind.The University of Southern Indiana men's and women's cross country teams are looking to bring back a pair of conference titles when they compete at the GLVC Championships Saturday in Rensselaer, Indiana.

Both USI squads finished second last season after capturing the league titles in 2003. Senior Heather Cooksey (Brownsburg, Indiana) is the defending women's champion after defeating the field by nearly a minute at last year's league championships.

With Cooksey as the overwhelming favorite to win the women's individual title Saturday and a much deeper squad this season, the No. 11-ranked women are considered one of the favorites to win the team championship.

Junior Missy Burgin (Sellersburg, Indiana) will run second for the women on Saturday, while freshman Allison Shafer (Plainville, Indiana), who is a candidate for Freshman of the Year honors, and senior Casey Schneider (New Salisbury, Indiana) will battle at number three and four for USI Saturday.

Senior Jennifer Finch (Warsaw, Indiana) also could be a factor for the Eagles Saturday. Finch has run number four for the Eagles the last two meets.

A deeper men's squad also is considered a favorite to take home the men's title. USI, ranked 13th nationally, is coming off a first-place performance at the Saluki Invitational two weeks ago after place seven runners in the top 13.

Junior Rey Alvarez (Danville, Indiana) has been running number one for the Eagles as of late and is considered a strong favorite to win the individual title Saturday, but he will get a stiff challenge from senior Jesse Davis (Bloomington, Indiana) and sophomore Paul Jellema (Dyer, Indiana).

Freshman Tim Sirbek (Hammond, Indiana) was USI's number three runner at the Saluki Invitational and should be a strong candidate for GLVC Freshman of the Year honors while seniors Jake England (Valparaiso, Indiana), Rob Garwood (Columbus, Indiana), and David Tyler (Evansville, Indiana) all could make significant contributions on Saturday.

Dan McDonnell,
USI Sports Information

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