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October 2, 2009

Annual Willamette Invitational Beckons PLU Runners

THIS WEEK: Pacific Lutheran will make its annual trek to Salem, Ore., this weekend to compete in one of the largest college cross country invitational meets. The Lutes will compete in the 2009 Willamette Invitational at Bush's Pasture Park near the Willamette University campus. The men's 8000-meter race gets underway at 9:30 a.m. and will be followed by the women's 5000-meter event at 10:15.

MORE ABOUT THE WILLAMETTE INVITATIONAL: Pacific Lutheran will compete in the "Cardinal" division, which includes teams from all NCAA divisions. There is also a "Gold" division that includes teams from NAIA, junior college and club as well as unattached runners. This event draws hundreds of runners in each of the four divisions - women's and men's Cardinal and women's and men's Gold.

COACH HEATHER KREIER SAYS: "The Willamette meet will be very competitive this weekend with over 900 athletes, which equates to over 200 athletes per race. This is a good meet because of the NWC and regional head-to-head competition."

MEN GO IN SHORT-HANDED (OR IS THAT SHORT-FOOTED?): Unfortunately for the PLU men, two of the top seven runners - Orion Bras and Barrett Bollen - will not compete. The women's team, on the other hand, should be at full strength.

BACK AT IT: The Lutes took last Saturday away from competition after competing in three invitationals during the first three weeks of the season.

ONE HOME MEET: Pacific Lutheran's one home meet of the season, the PLU Invitational, is scheduled for Saturday, Oct. 10, at the University Golf Course. The event gets underway at 10 a.m. with the men's 8000-meter run, followed at 11 a.m. by the women's 6000.

- PLU -