Cross country here at Eastern New Mexico University hasn’t always been successful in years past, but 2015 is different for both the men’s and women’s teams.
Under second year coach Danielle Kcholi, 12 of the runners have placed in each event that the team has had. Senior runner Trevor Merhege has led the men’s team, placing seventh the New Mexico Junior College Open. Freshman Estephanie Mendes has placed in each event, placing 12th at the NM Juco Open. Senior Klaudia Szych has also placed in each event, placing fifth in two separate events at West Texas A&M and at the NM Juco Open.
“They are out there at six in the morning, Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays doing some pretty grueling workouts. They are leaning on each other and understand what it takes to succeed,” said coach Danielle Kcholi, “I built this team around my top runners, Amber Saiz, Klaudia Szych and Azalia Rodriguez, and they have done a phenomenal job this year.”
All three of the Lady Greyhound runners that coach Kcholi mentioned placed in the NCAA Division ll Regionals, which had over 50 teams in attendance. Azalia Rodriguez placed 119th, Amber Saiz placed 25th, and Klaudia Szych placed 36th. Estephanie Mendes and Coley Norcross also placed in the regionals event. The women’s runners had a final placing of 10th in the 6K event. For the men’s team, Trevor Merhege placed 77th and Garrett Meyer placed 138th.
The team’s next upcoming event will be at the NCAA Division ll Championships on November 21, 2015 in Joplin, Missouri. The team expects to go out and do some damage at the championships, hoping they place and bring medals back home to Portales, New Mexico.