MADISON, Wisc. – An elite field awaits the Aggie cross country team as they compete in the sixth annual Wisconsin adidas Invitational on Friday (Oct 17) at the Thomas Zimmer Championship course. Half the field of 40 schools for both the men and women are ranked among the top 30 nationally, with six of the top 10 squads in the nation competing in each race.

“It’s probably the best regular season meet in the country,” noted Texas A&M assistant coach Wendel McRaven. “We like going up there, we like the course and we like facing great competition. The only field that can compare to this one is the NCAA Championships.

“We’re not approaching it like it’s the NCAA Championships. For us it’s a regular season cross country meet that prepares us for bigger postseason meets in November.”

With temperatures expected to be in the 50s, the women race at 11 a.m. on a 6,000-meter course while the men cover a distance of 8,000 meters starting at 11:45 a.m. Coverage of the meet is available through a premium service at

Headlining the women’s field are No. 2 Michigan State, No. 5 Arkansas, No. 6 Stanford, No. 8 Iowa State, No. 9 Florida State, and No. 10 Virginia. Top teams in the men’s field include No. 3 Northern Arizona, No. 5 Portland, No. 6 Syracuse, No. 7 Stanford, No. 9 UCLA, and No. 9 Wisconsin.

There are 22 nationally ranked programs amid the field of 41 women’s teams. Ranked schools also include No. 11 New Mexico, No. 12 Syracuse, No. 13 North Carolina, No. 14 Washington, No. 15 Wisconsin, No. 16 Boise State, No. 17 Boston College, No. 19 William & Mary, No. 20 West Virginia, No. 23 Providence, No. 24 Dartmouth, No. 25 Arizona State, No. 26 Minnesota, No. 27 Vanderbilt, No. 28 Notre Dame, and No. 30 BYU.

With 19 ranked schools among the 38 entered in the men’s race ranked teams also include No. 11 Michigan, No. 12 BYU, No. 13 Providence, No. 14 Iona, No. 16 New Mexico, No. 17 Arkansas, No. 18 Florida State, No. 19 Eastern Kentucky, No. 20 Oklahoma, No. 23 Indiana, No. 24 Princeton, No. 25 Washington and No. 27 Minnesota.

A&M’s trio of Hillary Montgomery, Grace Fletcher and Karis Jochen leads the women’s team. Also racing on the Zimmer course are Ashley Chamberlain, Haley Deakins, Melanie Enriquez, Johanna Galloway, and Katie Pia.

Isaac Spencer leads the Aggie men’s team while Cameron Villarreal competes in his first cross country race since the Aggie Opener relay event held back in August. The A&M squad also includes Christian Farris, Elliott Farris, Austin Geerts, Ryan Miller, Colin Slattery, Colin Stoeber, Ryan Teel and Austin Wells.  

“Racing on this course the past few years gives us great feedback,” said McRaven. “Individually the kids can see their progress and they can compare themselves to other teammates who competed on this course.

“Spencer will be able to see how he has progressed over the last four years on this course, plus he can see how he compares to Henry Lelei on this course. Hillary, Grace and Karis can do the same and make comparisons to Natosha Rogers.”

With all of the ranked schools in the Wisconsin meet, there will be several All-Americans and runners who previously qualified for the NCAA Championship field to race against. Spencer and Montgomery both advanced to the national meet last season as individuals, but each are eager for the Aggies to send a team to NCAA Championship this fall.

“The competition here will be a little better than what we saw at Minnesota a few weeks ago,” stated McRaven. “Our top three women all have a chance to be All-American this year and this meet gives them an opportunity to simulate that effort.

“On the men’s side Spencer has been at the national meet in cross country a couple of times, once with a team and last season as an individual. This week we also get Villarreal back in the mix. Those two along with Wells and Miller need to get themselves in position to make some noise at this meet.”


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here