Payne Wins Rocky Mountain Shootout, Both Teams Take Fourth

By Doug Fitzgerald published October 4, 2009

BOULDER â€" In her most recent competition, Shannon Payne was impressive in an NCAA Division I cross country meet. Saturday, she did herself one better.

The University of Colorado at Colorado Springs senior outran 114 other competitors to win the 23rd annual University of Colorado Rocky Mountain Shootout. Among the field were both Division I and Division II all-Americans.

“It was pretty exciting to have Shannon win the overall title,” said UCCS coach Mark Misch. “She had a special race. Any time you can win at this level is pretty outstanding.”

Payne covered the 5.8-kilometer course at Buffalo Ranch on CUâ€TMs South campus in 21 minutes, 25 seconds. In second place, eight seconds later, was Adams Stateâ€TMs Lavenna Mullenbach, followed by Mesa Stateâ€TMs Alexis Skarda (21:49) and Adams Stateâ€TMs Sofia Monroe (21:51). Six of the next seven finishers came from the host Buffaloes.

Payne and her Mountain Lion teammates took fourth place in the non-Division I team standings. Adams State was first, followed by Western State and Mesa State, all, like UCCS, from the Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference. Either Adams State or Western State has won every Division II national championship since 1993.

“The RMAC was well represented, thatâ€TMs for sure,” said Misch. “They did a great job.”

As has been the case the past three years, the CU Rocky Mountain Shootout broke the results down into two division, Division I and non-Division I. While UCCSâ€TM finish was fourth among the non-Division I schools, the Mountain Lions would have beaten both Air Force and Northern Colorado had the results been combined. In fact, only UCCSâ€TM sister school in Boulder would have finished ahead of the Mountain Lions among the Division I schools.

Kaitlin Frier was second among UCCS runners and 24th overall with a time of 23:23. Others included Lauren Bowers (34th, 23:57), Christy Severy (40th, 24:18), Melissa McKinley (45th, 24:28) and Tavia Hammond (52nd, 24:46).

Adams Stateâ€TMs Aaron Brown won the menâ€TMs race, which covered eight kilometers, with a time of 25:04.

The victories by Payne and Brown end a streak that has stood since 1991. A CU individual had won the shootout every year since 1991, either on the menâ€TMs or womenâ€TMs side.

The UCCS men also took fourth place among non-Division I teams competing behind Adams State, Western State and Metro State.

The top finisher among the UCCS men was Gabe Small, who took 39th overall (21st among non-Division I runners) with a time of 27:22. He was followed by Dan Pinter (49th overall, 27:43), Joel Kienitz (60th, 28:09) and Carlos Ruibal (61st, 28:15).

“Weâ€TMve got three good weeks of training ahead of us before we get the (the RMAC Championships),” said Misch, “so thatâ€TMs our focus.”

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Additional News Stories
November 14, 2009Payne Named USTFCCCA Central Region Athlete of the YearShannon Payne of the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs was named the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association Central Region Women's Cross Country Athlete of the Year, the USTFCCCA announced Thursday.
February 7, 2009UCCS Senior Payne Takes 16th Place at National Cross Country ChampionshipsUniversity of Colorado at Colorado Springs senior Shannon Payne took 16th place at the USA National Cross Country Championships/World Team Trials Saturday.
November 22, 2008Payne Grabs Third at NationalsSLIPPERY ROCK, Pa. - University of Colorado at Colorado Springs senior Shannon Payne took third place at the NCAA Division II Cross Country Championships Saturday at Cooper's Lake Campground.
November 8, 2008Payne Wins Central Regional, Qualifies for NationalsKEARNEY, Neb. – Shannon Payne is headed to nationals, and she’s headed there as one of the favorites.
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