McKenna Brothers Lead USU Cross Country at Utah State Open Saturday

LOGAN Utah – Senior Brian McKenna was USU’s highest finisher, placing fifth (21:06.7), at the Utah State Cross Country Open to lead the Aggie men to a second-place finish Saturday, at the American West Heritage Center south of Logan. The Aggie women, who were led by sophomore Hannah Williams in 11th-place (18:05.8), placed fourth overall in the season opening meet for both teams. The women ran a 5k race, while the men ran a 7k race. “You want a group at the front, it helps bring other people along,” USU veteran head coach Gregg Gensel said. “The improvement that we have shown both on the men’s and the women’s side from two weeks ago when we started practicing is phenomenal. I like seeing that kind of improvement. That is what you want out of the athletes and that is what we got. Having this experience at home, at a somewhat familiar course is important.” Weber State’s Taylor Thonley, a Logan native, captured the women’s title with a time of 17:21.6 after taking fourth last season in the Utah State Open. For the men, BYU’s Jared Ward garnered the top honor with a time of 20:47.7. Joining McKenna in the men’s top 10 for the Aggies were sophomore Kyle McKenna in sixth (21:06.9) and senior Daniel Howell in seventh (21:09.1). Junior Stephanie Burt joined Williams in the women’s top 15 with a 15th-place finish in a time of 18:12.3. Utah State cross country will continue its season as it travels to Bozeman, Mont. for the Montana State Open on Sept. 17 at 9 a.m. Fans can follow USU cross country as well as Utah State athletics at or on Facebook at Utah State University Athletics. Utah State Open Results Sept. 3, 2011 American West Heritage Center Men’s Team Results 1. BYU – 24 2. Utah State – 43 3. Weber State – 57 Men’s Top 5 Finishers 1. Jared Ward (BYU), 20:47.7 2. Curtis Carr (BYU), 20:58.7 3. John Coyle (WSU), 21:03.0 4. Alden Bahr (BYU), 21:04.9 5. Brian McKenna (USU), 21:06.7 Utah State Men’s Finishers 5. Brian McKenna, 21:06.7 6. Kyle McKenna, 21:06.9 7. Daniel Howell, 21:09.1 12. Hunter Nelson, 21:54.1 13. Devin Lang, 21:55.1 14. Eric Larson, 22:03.7 17. Aaron Clements, 22:46.4 36. Nick Bolinder, 22:51.0 38. David Cluff, 22:52.0 Women’s Team Results 1. BYU – 40 2. Weber State – 41 3. Utah – 55 4. UTAH STATE – 94 Top 5 Women’s Finishers 1. Taylor Thornley (WSU), 17:21.6 2. Susannah Hurst (Utah), 17:30.0 3. Sarah Darby (BYU), 17:42.7 4. Laken Hintze (WSU), 17:44.9 5. Hilary Troutner (Utah), 17:47.2 Utah State Women’s Finishers 11. Hannah Williams, 18:05.8 15. Stephanie Burt, 18:12.3 27. Alex Litzsinger, 18:21.6 33. Brittany Fisher, 18:31.1 35. Kaylee Campbell, 18:34.0 45. Cherice Chugg, 19:08.0 55. Alisa Sheffer, 20:30.2 -USU-

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