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Courtesy: Spencer Farrin (Moscow, Idaho)
Barry Britt took second in the men's senior national race.
Vandals place at national meet
Courtesy: Idaho Athletic Media Relations
          Release: 11/29/2011
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VANCOUVER, B.C. – Three University of Idaho athletes were among the top finishers at last weekend’s Canadian Cross Country Championships at Vancouver, B.C.

Barry Britt, a junior from Hampton, New Brunswick, took second overall in the men’s 10k senior national race with a time of 32:49 on the cold, windy day. It’s an improvement upon his seventh-place finish at the meet from a year ago.

Stephane Colle, a senior first-year Vandal from St-Eustache, Quebec, finished 13th overall in the men’s senior race with a time of 34:02.

“It’s a long season after running through NCAA regionals,” Idaho director of track and field/cross country Wayne Phipps said of his runners. “For them to still be competing at that high of a level is really a great accomplishment.”

On the women’s side, Alycia Butterworth, a sophomore from Parksville, B.C., took fourth in the junior women’s 5k race with a time of 18:52. She showed impressive versatility at Canadian national competition this year after winning the Canada junior national title in the 2000m steeplechase on the track.

“She’s made amazing improvements in every aspect, especially speed and endurance, and her range is really starting to show in her races right now,” Phipps said. “She ran with a lot of confidence and it was just a great cap to her cross country season.”

Phipps said that while the group’s physical improvements throughout the year are impressive, he thinks the confidence and the mental gains from competing at such a high level will carry over into the indoor track and field season in the spring.

The more difficult thing now, he said, is making his runners take time off to make sure they have adequate recuperation before the begin training for track.

“We force them to take a bit of time off and start back really easy, then build up the mileage again,” Phipps said. “With all the travel and competition, this now gives them some time to focus on their school work since right now is an important time for that.”

The group has a full month to settle into the track season. The Vandals open the indoor season the second weekend in January at the WSU Indoor Open.

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