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Liberty XC Set for Pair of Saturday Meets

October 2, 2014
|  Lynchburg, Va.
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Greater Louisville Classic Meet Information/Results Page

Louisville Men's 8K Course Map

Louisville Women's 5K Course Map

Louisville Weather

Hagan Stone Classic Meet Information

Hagan Stone Classic Results Page

Hagan Stone Course Maps/Videos

Greensboro Weather

For the first time this season, the Liberty men's and women's cross country runners will be divided between two different meets on Saturday. A group of Flames and Lady Flames will head to Kentucky for the Greater Louisville Classic, while others will race in the Hagan Stone Classic in Greensboro, N.C.

The Greater Louisville Classic will be contested at E.P. "Tom" Sawyer State Park, the site of the 2014 NCAA Division I Southeast Regional Championships. Liberty will compete in the men's 8K blue race at 10:45 a.m. and the women's 5K blue race at 11:30.

At Hagan Stone Park, action will get started with the men's 8K at 9:30 a.m. The Lady Flames will then compete in the women's 5K at 10:15.

Weather Report
Saturday morning's weather in Louisville is expected to feature the coolest temperatures Liberty has raced in this season, by far. The high temperature is projected to remain in the 50s with a strong breeze out of the west.

It will be a bit warmer in Greensboro for the Hagan Stone Classic. Saturday's high temperature will climb into the 60s in the Gate City under sunny skies.

Who's Heading Where?
Liberty will send seven men's runners and seven women's runners to the Greater Louisville Classic. The Flames' entrants include redshirt senior Josh MacDonald, junior Sam Hibbs, redshirt sophomores Josh Showalter and Will Templeton and freshmen Graham Hansel, Titus Koech and Stalline Kurgat. Meanwhile, the Lady Flames will go with a lineup of senior Jacy Christiansen, redshirt juniors Meredith Mistretta and Caroline Parris and sophomores Kat Bouton, Lindsey Bray, Jessie Proehl and Terrill Zentmeyer.

Freshman Cameron Francis will be the only Liberty men's runner in action at the Hagan Stone Classic, but 10 Lady Flames are entered in the meet. They include Stephanie Buda, Mary Cate Cooper, Crystal Grierson, Kaitlyn Hutchins, Alyssa Karle, Erica Linnemann, Hannah Owen, Hannah Scherlacher, Jennifer Tartini and Heather Wyatt.

Last Time in Louisville
Jennifer Klugh was the last Liberty runner to compete at E.P. "Tom" Sawyer State Park, at the 2012 NCAA Division I Cross Country Championships. She placed 93rd with a 6K time of 20:44.7 in the final race of her collegiate career.

The Flames and Lady Flames will compete in the Greater Louisville Classic for the first time since Sept. 30, 2006. That day, Josh McDougal won the men's 8K in a then course-record time of 23:16, helping the Liberty men's squad finish third.

The Lady Flames placed fourth in the women's team standings, led by Piper Newby's 16th-place finish. Current assistant coach Rebekah Ricksecker was Liberty's No. 4 runner at the meet, clocking a 5K time of 18:50 for 41st place.

Heading Back to Hagan Stone
Saturday will mark Liberty's first appearance at the Hagan Stone Classic since Oct. 3, 2009. That meet saw Sam Chelanga capture the men's 8K title and lead the Flames to the team championship. On the women's side, Dacia Bushman placed fifth in the 5K, helping the Lady Flames place second behind Duke.

Runner of the Week
Senior Jacy Christiansen is the reigning Big South Women's Cross Country Runner of the Week, thanks to her performance at the Virginia/Panorama Farms Invitational. She steadily moved up through the field during the 6K race, ending up in 23rd place with the second-fastest time of her career (21:58.54). This is the second straight year that Christiansen has earned the Big South Runner of the Week award after the Virginia/Panorama Farms Invitational.

Who Will Finish First?
The Liberty men's team has featured a different No. 1 runner at each of the first three meets this season. Sam Hibbs led the way at the UVa Duals, Titus Koech was the Flames' top finisher at the Gardner-Webb XC Invitational and Josh MacDonald paced the Flames at the Virginia/Panorama Farms Invitational.

Familiar Faces
Liberty will see a couple familiar foes on the starting line in Louisville, where the Flames will be one of 45 teams in the men's blue race and the Lady Flames are one of 42 squads in the women's blue race. In both races, Liberty will face Big South Conference squads Campbell and Radford for the second time this season, after also meeting the Camels and Highlanders at the Sept. 13 Gardner-Webb XC Invitational.

Coastal Carolina will also make the trek to Louisville, but the Chanticleers' men's and women's teams are entered in their respective gold races Saturday morning.