AUSTIN, Texas – After three weeks following the season opening meet, Texas Cross Country heads to San Antonio this week for the UTSA Ricardo Romo Classic on Friday evening. The Longhorns will put some of their top runners in action this week after giving them the first meet off.
The Ricardo Romo Classic will be the first opportunity for returning All-American Craig Lutz to get on the course and run for Texas this season. One of the top returning runners in the nation this year, Lutz will hope to help the Longhorns get a victory in San Antonio again after winning the meet a year ago.
On the women’s side, Arkansas transfer Sandy Raines makes her debut as a Longhorn. Last season, Raines helped the Razorbacks win the NCAA South Central Regional and Southeastern Conference and finish 15th at the NCAA Championships. She will lead the pack for Texas hoping to repeat as winners of the Romo Classic as well.
Texas will face regional competition on Friday and both the men’s and women’s races will be a 5,000-meter course for the university and college divisions, under the championship distance for each. Action is set to get underway at 6:30 p.m. at the National Shooting Complex in San Antonio with the women’s race followed by the men at 7 p.m.
Coach Brad Herbster and his team are ready to get back into action after a short break as the Longhorns head into some key meets to prepare for the championship season in November. The Ricardo Romo Classic will serve as another tune up for the Longhorns before heading into one of the larger meets in the nation next week at the Roy Griak Invitational.
“With this UTSA meet we are going to try to do our own thing and focus on what we want to accomplish down the road,” Herbster said. “We’re not going to set the world afire this week, but we will work on a few things and focus on improving for our big races later in the season. Because the men are ranked 23rd in the nation, we want to make some kind of statement this week, but the next race is where we really want to make a statement.”
Following this week’s race, Texas will head north to the Roy Griak Invitational hosted by Minnesota. The Griak is one of the top cross country meets in the nation annually and brings in strong competition for all six collegiate races as well as four in the high school ranks.