DURHAM - There is a new policy for the North Carolina A&T men's and women's cross country teams. You must think championship programs. The two teams competed in their first meet of the 2012 season and came away with mixed results against N.C. Central and Paine College in the NCCU Cross Country Relay at the Al Buehler Cross Country Trail at Duke University.
The meet marked the debut of the new Aggies coaching staff led by Duane Ross who is assisted by Joel Pearson and Bill Dunn.
"We have changed the entire system," explained Ross. "We have stepped up the intensity and we have a lot to look forward to this year. We are expanding their vision beyond just competing for the conference, but also being competitive on a regional and national level."
"We've been training our athletes really hard and they have all been responding well, and that was evident in their performances this weekend," said Ross. We expect a lot of great things out of these athletes. They have tremendous athletic ability and they are really focused."
The N.C. Central women finished its relay in 1 hour and 15 minutes, while the Aggies had a team-time of 1:16.38. Kristin Rush led the Aggies by running a personal-best 14:24.5. She and freshman teammate Janay Ferrell had the two fastest laps of the day. Ferrell topped all competitors with an event-best lap of 3:18. Rush's fastest relay lap was 3:19.
"I am extremely proud of my women in their first competition. This meet will prepare us for more competitive meets later," said Ross. "I was impressed by both Rush and Ferrell. Rush has been a great leader and her time today showed that she has improved significantly from last year and still has a lot of room for growth."
The Aggies will return to action Saturday, Sept. 15 in the Elon Cross Country Invitational on the campus of Elon University.
Women's North Carolina A&T Cross Country Results
Kristin Rush- 3:19m, 3:37, 3:50, 3:39 14:24.5
Janay Ferrell- 3:18, 3:37, 3:50, 3:39 14:25.5
Samira Johnson- 3:51, 3:55, 3:51, 3:55 15:28.5
Ariana Betts- 3:51, 4:03,4:04, 4:05 16:01.5
Cameron Shackleford- 3:56, 4:05, 4:07, 4:08 16:12.5
TEAM TOTAL 1:16.37.5
Men's North Carolina A&T Cross
Saeed Jones - 2:56.1, 2:58.31, 3:13.6, 3:07.12, 3:10.00 15:25.12
Christian Harrison- 2:58.6, 3:02.91, 3:13.91, 3L17.66, 3:15.61 15:47.51
Darius Bogerty- 3:02.21, 3:32.1, 3:35.7, 3:42.6, 3:33.11 17:38.71
Neegbeah Reeves- 3:22.1, 3:29.6, 3:38.8, 3:42.11, 3:30.1, 17:42.63
Paris Reddick-Simmons - DNF
TOTAL TIME- 1:06.33.97