by JON DYKSTRA The Iola Register | September 17, 2016
JOPLIN - The Red Devil Cross Country teams spent their Saturday at the Southern Stampede hosted by Missouri Southern State University in Joplin and once again Ricardo Banuelos and Kaitlyn Shoemaker stood out.
Banuelos and his Allen men's team took on the NCAA D-II competition in the 'University' race. Banuelos took 10th out of the 203-person field. He ran a 25:10.78. The men were able to run and compete comfortably and gain some valuable experience as they continue to develop this season.
Philip Lagemann — 25:54.28 — was 31st, Ludreche Bounga — 26:39.24 — was 65th. Jesus Gutierrez — 26:45.21 — was 70th. Paul Becker — 27:11.99 — was 89th. Alejandro Ruiz — 27:122.62 — was 91st. Obed Quintana — 27:32.86 — was 111th. Ben Lucier — 27:43.19 — was 116th. Andonet Thermidor — 27:43.19 — was 125th. Josue Alvarado — 27:48.83 — was 128th. Ryan Yarde — 28:05.69 — was 142th.
Allen finished 11th as a team and beat out several D-II schools.
"We grew a lot and took a big step forward towards championship time," "We're not where I want us to be as a team and our fitness needs to continue to improve, however we have some really bright spots and some guys really stepped up. Allen coach Vince DeGrado said.
Shoemaker took first in the 'College' division of the race. Her time of 18:08.4 — breaking her own school-record — would have earned her 15th in the 'University' race, but the Allen star was not pushed in the 'College' race, winning by 12 seconds.
Despite Shoemaker's win, Allen took second to Cowley Community College.
"Cowley put it to us," DeGrado said. "We looked flat and that is on me partially with the training (cycle), but they have got to step up. If you're going to have a bad day, make it the best bad day of the season. We just didn't look like we had our legs quite underneath us from the start. Once again I'll take the blame for this and figure out where we need to go with our training. DeGrado said.
Freshman Abby Steinhauser finished seventh in the event with a 19:20.9.
Vicky Ibarra — 20:09.7 — was 25th. Kristina Silvers — 20:20.1 — was 28th. Hannah Johnson — 20:40.5 — was 42nd. Gemma Gonzalez — 20:59.9 — was 54th. Kim Rodriguez — 21:04.9 — was 59th. Jessica Reese — 21:12.1 — was 65th. Maria Puente — 21:56.6 — was 91st. Ciera Bennett — 22:13.1 — was 103rd. Jaelyn Casanova — 23:45.7 — was 123rd.
The Red Devils will be in action next week at the Oklahoma State Cowboy Jamboree.