Both the Pittsburg State University men’s and women’s cross country teams raced to second-place finishes in the Maroon II Division of the Roy Griak Invitational hosted by the University of Minnesota Saturday.

Both the Pittsburg State University men’s and women’s cross country teams raced to second-place finishes in the Maroon II Division of the Roy Griak Invitational hosted by the University of Minnesota Saturday.
The Pitt State women finished second among 24 NCAA Division II schools, while the Gorilla men placed second among 22 Division II programs Saturday. Augustana College won the race with 54 points, while the Gorillas were second with 129.
Senior Erica Ogle placed seventh overall in the women’s six-kilometer race in 22 minutes, 59 seconds. Sophomore Brittney Graff finished 15th in 23:22, while senior Venessa Lee made her season debut with a 23rd-place showing in 23:47.
“I thought the women turned in a team effort today,” head coach Russ Jewett said. “We were aggressive early and then hung tough. I think this was a confidence builder of a meet. Erica Ogle had a fantastic race. She was among the lead pack. Venessa Lee also had a good debut in her first race of the season.”
The Pitt State men scored 120 points to finish behind Drury University’s 109-point effort.
Junior MJ Hassaballa finished sixth among scored athletes in the eight-kilometer race with a time of 25:37. Junior Mason Stout was 13th in 26:04, while junior Cliff Miles was 18th in 26:21.
“The men’s race was a very good one up front,” Jewett said. “The top four teams all were very close. MJ had an outstanding race -- maybe as good a race as he’s had for us. The team deserved this showing. It was a pretty darn good effort and a confidence builder.”