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Oct. 17, 2002

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COLUMBUS, Ohio – The Ohio State men’s cross country team will travel to Terre Haute, Ind. to get its last tune-up before the Big Ten Championships to compete in the Asics/Pacesetter Pre-National Championships. The meet will take place on Saturday Oct. 19 at the Wabash Valley Sportscenter. The men’s race will begin at 12:50 p.m.

THE PRE-NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIPS
Indiana State University will play host to the Asics/Pacesetter Pre-National Championships. The meet will take place in Terre Haute, Ind. which is also the site of the 2002 National Championships. The meet will give the Buckeyes a chance to compete with some of the top in throughout the country.

WHO TO WATCH
Matt Penza (So., Girard,Ohio/Girard) placed in the Top 10 for the third time this past Saturday at the All-Ohio Invitational. Penza had his best time at the Purdue Invitational where he ran a time of 24:55. Penza also had an impressive performance at the Roy Griak MeetInvitational where he placed 105th out of 231finishers helping the Buckeyes to an impressive 12th-place finish among the top teams in the country. Penza hopes to guide the Buckeyes to another impressive finish at the Pre-National meet this weekend.

LAST TIME OUT
The men’s cross country team won the All-Ohio Invitational at the Methodist Theological School in Delaware, Ohio, while the women’s team finished ninth. Several of the state’s colleges and universities participated in the meet.

The victory on the 8-kilometer course by the men was their first meet victory since winning the Akron Invitational, Sept. 7. In the race that combined all divisions and featured 39 teams, the men took the third through seventh individual spots. When breaking the scoring down by divisions, the men took places one through five in the Division I race. Leading the way for the Buckeyes was Dan Glaz (So., Palos Hills, Ill./A.A. Stagg) who finished the race in a time of 25:41.9, the third best time of the day.

The men also received strong performances from Jon White (Sr., Sylvania, Ohio/Sylvania Northview), Matt Penza (So., Girard, Ohio/Girard), Aaron Fisher (So. Indianapolis, Ind./Franklin Central) and Sjaan Gerth (Jr., Belgrave, Ontario, Canada). The Buckeyes Top 5 runners finished within five seconds of one another.

GARY NOW IN SIXTH SEASON
Robert Gary will begin his sixth season as head coach of the Ohio State Buckeyes. During his tenure at Ohio State Gary has coached several All-Americans and he lead the Ohio State men’s team to the NCAA Championships for the first time in over forty years.

As an athlete, Gary has qualified for his fourth United States World Cross Country team and competed at the 1999 World Track Cross Country team and competed at the 1999 World Track Championships in Seville, Spain.

Gary represented the United States in Atlanta, Ga., as a member of the 1996 Olympic team in the 3,000-meter steeplechase. In the Olympic trials, he captured second place behind training partner and former Buckeye Mark Croghan. Gary recorded the eighth-fastest time ever by an American in the 3,000-meter steeplechase.

MYERS LEADS WOMEN’S TEAM
During the off-season, the Buckeyes added a familiar face to the coaching staff in Chad Myers. Over the last four years, Myers has served as a volunteer coach for the Buckeyes. Myers duties will be primarily working with the women’s team. Myers attended Otterbein College and competed in track and cross country. In 1994 and 1995 Myers qualified for nationals was also runner-up at the Ohio Athletic Conference cross country Championships. Myers was also a national qualifier in track in 1996.

UP NEXT
The Ohio State men’s and women’s cross country teams will travel to West Lafayette, Ind. to compete in the Big Ten Championships