When Jake Hurysz ran by coach Heather Burroughs just past three miles at Saturday's Rocky Mountain Shootout, he was so far ahead that the trailing pack led by Blake Theroux and Martin Medina could barely be seen through the yellow cottonwoods that dot the Buffalo Ranch cross country course in south Boulder.

Hurysz did not look over as CU's assistant cross country coach shouted encouragement, concentrating on his footing.

"That was 14:50 for three miles," Burroughs said, as Hurysz passed and she waited for his teammates. "He is looking good."

Hurysz continued running far in front, extending his lead over the final two miles to finish the 8K race in 24 minutes, 34 seconds. It was the fourth fastest time ever on the well-tested course, but was an effort that was "easy," he said afterwards while cooling down.

"I wanted to come out and run a controlled race, and see how I felt after 3 miles," Hurysz added.

The only Buffs to run faster than Hurysz on the demanding Shootout course? Jorge Torres (24:07), the course record holder, and Adam Goucher (24:12). Both won NCAA cross country championships and went on to compete in the Olympic Games.

"Around here, stars go out and new starts come out," said Colorado head coach Mark Wetmore. "It is already evident that Jake has a big future for us."

Hurysz, a junior, has been a star since his senior year in high school, when he clocked 8:49 for two miles, and 4:06 for the mile. He ended up staying in Chapel Hill and competing for the University of North Carolina. When his coach left for a new job, Hurysz "decided it was time for a change."

Fortunately for the Buffs, Hurysz liked his future teammates, Wetmore, Burroughs and CU, when he came on a recruiting visit. What he liked best, he said, was how "success" is the prevalent attitude for the Buffs. He did have some success last spring, clocking 13:38 for 5,000 meters while running unattached after transferring to CU.

Like Hurysz, Carrie Verdon, the top finisher for the Colorado women in third place, had a successful prep career. She won two California high school cross country tittles.

On Saturday, the Buffs freshman ran a smart race, letting teammates Rachel Viger and Jana Stolting run ahead before moving ahead in the final 700 meters. Verdon finished in 21:03 for the 5.8K.

"It was exciting to run my first race for CU," Verdon said.

Unattached runners Ellie Keyser (20:19) and Melody Fairchild (20:49) finished first and second, respectively.

Buffs rounded out the top four on the men's side with Blake Theroux (25:01), Martin Medina (25:01) and Pierce Murphy (25:19) following Hurysz to lead CU to the top team score.

There were several notable Buffs who did not compete on Saturday, including junior Shalaya Kipp. Kipp, a two-time All-American in cross country, competed at the 2012 Olympic Games in London and should be joining her team as the season progresses.

The Buffs will be off until Oct. 13 when they will race at the NCAA Pre-National Invitational in Louisville, Ky. The University of Louisville will host the NCAA Championships Nov. 17 and will host the pre-national meet in two weeks for teams to 'preview' the championship course.

Rocky Mountain Shootout

Buffalo Ranch

Men's 8K Division I team scores

1.Colorado, 15; 2. Wyoming, 52; 3. Air Force, 76; 4. Northern Colorado, 114.

Men's 8K Non-Division I team scores

1. Colorado School of Mines, 45; 2. Fort Lewis, 55; 3. MSU-Billings, 57; 4. Western State, 95; 5. South Dakota School of Mines, 153; 6. Colorado Christian, 175; 7. Garden City CC, 183; 8. Colorado Mesa, 202; 9. Gillette, 206; 10. Colorado College, 286

Top 15 men's finishers

1. Jake Hurysz, CU 24:34; 2. Blake Theroux, CU, 25:01; 3. Martin Medina, CU, 25:01; 4. Pierce Murphy, CU, 25:19; 5. Gabriel Proctor, unattached, 25:21; 6. Hugh Dowdy, CU, 25:24; 7. Connor Winter, CU, 25:26; 8. Josh Eberly, unattached, 25:32; 9. Aric Van Halen, CU, 25:39; 10. Morgan Pearson, unattached, 25:42; 11. Brice Cleland, unattached, 25:44; 12. Matt Biegner, CU, 25:48; 13. Ammar Moussa, unattached, 25:49; 14. Jonny Stevens, CU, 25:50; 15. Nicholas Ekel, unattached, 25:54.

Other CU finishers

17. Jerome Perkins, 25:56; 23. David Kilgore, 26:34; 24. Dillon Shije, 26:42; 35. Ryan Savercool, 27:13; 49. Jeff Warren, 27:32

Women's 5.8K Division I team scores

1.Colorado, 19; 2. Wyoming, 58; 3. Northern Colorado, 66; 4. Nebraska-Omaha, 93.

Women's 5.8K Non-Division I team scores

1. MSU-Billings, 50; 2. Colorado Mesa, 74; 3. Fort Lewis, 85; 4. Gillette, 125; 5. Elmhurst, 144; 6. Colorado Christian, 157; 7. Colorado School of Mines, 163; 8. South Dakota School of Mines, 194; 9. Garden City, 236; 10. DU Club, 259; 11. CSU-Pueble, 266.

Top 15 women's finishers

1. Ellie Keyser, unattached, 20:19; 2. Melody Fairchild, unattached, 20:49; 3. Carrie Verdon, CU, 21:03; 4. Rachel Gioscia-Ryan, unattached, 21:08; 5. Rachel Viger, CU, 21:10; 6. Nicole Peters, unattached, 21:18; 7. Jana Stolting, CU, 21:21; 8. Rikki Gonzales, UNC, 21:35; 9. Holly Page, UW, 21:45; 10. Regan Mullen, CCU, 21:47; 11. Courtney Bouchet, CU, 21:57; 12. Camille Logan, CU, 21:58; 13. Amanda Vorthmann, UNO, 22:03; 14. Liz Tremblay, CU, 22:07; 15. Christine Nelson, UW, 22:14.

Other CU finishers

16. Nikki Look, 22:16; 17. Staci Foster, 22:24; 78. Becky Popiel, 25:08.