Texas cross country sweeps team titles at Arturo Barrios Invitational

Beth Ramos earned her first collegiate victory, in 20:11.2, to lead the Texas women's cross country team to victory in the Arturo Barrio Invitational (image courtesy of texassports.com).

The Texas men's cross country team claimed five of the top six places and the women's team grabbed five of the top nine to lead the Longhorns to a sweep of the team titles in the Arturo Barrios Invitational in College Station Saturday.

The meet, hosted by Texas A&M, resulted in a slew of personal records for the Longhorns. Sophomore Haftu Knight earned his second career victory at the college level, completing the 8K course in 23:52.1. Beth Ramos crossed the finish line first in the women's 6K, earning her first college victory in 20:11.2.

Cross country team scores are determined by adding up the numbers of the places in which each team's top six runners finishes, the the lowest score wins. With runners finishing first, second, fourth, fifth and sixth, the men's team finished with 18 points, 48 better second-place LSU.

After Knight, Abraham Avila-Martinez finished second (23:58.0), Crayton Carrozza finished fourth (24:03.5), Yaseen Abdalla crossed the line fifth (24:06.2) and Graydon Morris sixth (24:07.4). Those five runners accounted for the scoring, but UT actually claimed seven of the top nine individual places: Cruz Gomez finished seventh (24:10.5) and Rodger Rivera placed ninth (24:18.1).

It was much of the same on the women's side, as Texas put 23 points on the board, 29 ahead of runner-up LSU. Ramos and Madeline Vondra (20:34.5) combined for a 1-2 finish to lead the Horns to victory. After the top tandem, Claudine Blancaflor placed fifth in 20:54.7, Ava Peeples came in sixth in 21:01.9 and Gracie Morris finished ninth, in 21:14.3. Like the men, the women had another runner finish just outside the scoring, when Alexa Rodriguez crossed the line in 21:18.3.

Just like that, the season is halfway over. Texas scheduled just two meets this season.

To conclude the 2020 campaign, the Longhorns will journey north for the Oct. 30 Big 12 Championships in Lawrence, Kan.

Riley Zayas

Riley Zayas is a high school sophomore and freelance journalist from Round Rock, Texas. He began his journalism career as a Sports Illustrated Kids reporter and has since become a regular contributor to Horns Illustrated, covering Texas Longhorn sports. His work also includes Fellowship of Christian Athletes publications, College Baseball Nation and Sports Spectrum, a national christian sports website. He currently serves as the Managing Editor of True To The Cru, covering UMHB athletics. Twitter: @ZayasRiley

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