Rust Buster Growing into an Elite Meet

By Doug Fitzgerald published September 10, 2011

COLORADO SPRINGS - Mike English finished seventh among NCAA Division II runners at the University of Colorado Colorado Springs hosted its annual Rust Buster Open cross country meet Saturday at Monument Valley Park.

Now in its fourth year, the Rust Buster has become the second-largest cross country meet in Colorado.

"The Rust Buster, we started in 2008 and had 87 runners total that first year," said UCCS coach Mark Misch. "This year we had close to 250."

The men's race featured an elite field with five teams boasting a national ranking. Colorado School of Mines came into the event ranked No. 4 in NCAA Division II, followed closely by Queens (N.C.) at 13th and Metro State at 15th. Additionally, Cloud Community College came in ranked 21st in the NJCAA Division I rankings and Colorado College was listed as "also receiving votes" in the NCAA Division III poll after having a No. 30 ranking previously.

"The field today was outstanding," said Misch. "The men's side had over half the teams nationally ranked; that's pretty steep."

The women's side had one nationally-ranked team, Queens at No. 9.

Each of the top five finishers in the men's race and the top three in the women's race broke the previous course record.

Air Force's Jim Walmsley ran away with the men's race, winning by nearly 15 seconds by covering the six-kilometer course in 18 minutes, 30.72 seconds. Sean Gildea of Colorado School of Mines was second at 18:45.50 and Matt Bell of Air Force was third. Colorado State's Spencer Lynass was fourth and Jeremy Drenckhahn was fifth.

English was 19th overall in a field that included plenty of Division I and highly-regarded unattached runners.

"We knew this meet was going to be loaded," said Misch. "There was one guy who finished 16th last year and ran faster today and still finished 50th or so. That puts it in perspective."

Ryan Derrick was second among UCCS runners, taking 25th. Ted Schultz was 34th and William Edwards was 37th.

"Ted Schultz is probably the most improved guy in our program," said Misch. "He's worked extremely hard and it showed today."

Colorado State swept the first five places in the women's race. Hannah Pensack-Rinehart won the race, followed by Nicole Peters, Ellie Keyser, Kendra Gerk and Whitney Henderson.

Freshman Samantha Bauer led the UCCS women with a 40th-place overall finish, which was 13th among Division II runners. Three sophomores, Veronica Sandoval, Sarah Treese and Alexa Urban were close behind at 45th, 48th and 49th respectively.

"On the women's side, we were very young," said Misch. "We held out Ashley Benfield and Sara Kettelkamp. Of the women who ran, for five it was their first college race."

Additional News Stories
November 5, 2011UCCS Men Qualify to Compete at National Cross Country ChampionshipThe University of Colorado Colorado Springs men’s cross-country team qualified for the NCAA Division II National Championship in Spokane, Wash. on Nov. 19th.
October 22, 2011UCCS Men Sixth, Women Eighth at RMAC Cross Country ChampionshipsThe University of Colorado Colorado Springs men's cross-country team placed sixth in the team standings with a team score of 159 points, completing their best team finish at the Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference championship since 2008.
October 8, 2011UCCS women take second, men third at Metro State InvitationalOn the same course as the all-important regional race will be held next month, both University of Colorado Colorado Springs cross country teams ran their best team races for the 2011 season on Saturday morning.
September 17, 2011UCCS women's cross country nabs third at Colorado College InvitationalThe University of Colorado Colorado Springs women’s cross-country team placed third in the team standings at the Colorado College Invitational at Monument Valley Park Saturday Morning.
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