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Ohio State cross country teams off to the races with early victories

The Ohio State men’s and women’s cross-country teams both opened their 2012 seasons with victories on Saturday in the Flyer 5K Challenge in Kettering, Ohio. 

For the OSU women, the meet came just two days after the Wednesday announcement that Khadevis Robinson, who competed in the 800-meter run at the 2012 Summer Olympics, was hired to lead the women’s cross-country and track and field distance-running programs.

Robinson’s team took five of the top seven spots in the Flyer 5K, led by junior Meredith Wagner, who finished first in a time of 18 minutes, 12.0 seconds.

Sophomore Michelle Thomas finished second (18:21.0), freshman Alexandra Aughenbaugh was third (18:23.0), freshman Helen Willman placed sixth (18:41.0) and sophomore Nicole Hilton rounded out the top seven (18:47.0). Those five places earned OSU the meet’s low score of 19 points, half of the 38 points scored by second-place Miami (Ohio).

In his first meet with OSU, the men’s team was led by associate head coach Brice Allen. Unlike the women’s team, the OSU men were shut out of the top three places, but took five of the meet’s top 10 spots.

Two freshmen led the way for the OSU men, with a fourth-place finish for Nicholas Pupino (15:25.6) and Jordan Reed placing fifth (15:26.9). The Buckeyes also took the eighth, ninth and 10th spots with redshirt sophomore Jackson Neff (15:39.9), freshman Steven Weaver (15:40.4) and sophomore Michael Brajdic (15:41.7).

“I’m excited about today’s win at the Flyer 5K Challenge,” Allen said in a press release. “Great finishes by two of our freshmen today in Pupino and Redd.”

The next meet for both the men and women will be the Spartan Invitational in East Lansing, Mich., on Sept. 14. 

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