X-Country Surges To Second at SUNYBy Mike Parkins
Respect doesn't come easily for the cross country team, but they earned it with a second place finish at last Saturday's meet at SUNYCortland.
The Beavers stormed to a strong second place finish, ahead of three nationally ranked teams, including 17th ranked Cortland. Only 16th ranked St. Lawrence was able to hold off MIT's charge.
From the gun, the Beavers settled into good position, and as the race unfolded the team only moved up. Chris McGuire '00 and Mike Parkins '99 battled with the big boys up front from the start, and McGuire surged to a fourth place finish in 25:45. Parkins finished on his heels in 25:48 for sixth.
Mark Strauss '01 kept the pressure on the rest of the field with a 20th place finish (26:33). The assault continued with Rich Rosalez '98 muscling his way to a 26:56 finish (35th). With Phil Loiselle '01 turning in a 27:02 finish for 49th, the team secured its place on the award stand.
Sohail Husain '98 and Frank Johnston '00 poured salt in the other teams wounds, placing ahead of every other team's sixth and seventh man in 58th and 63rd, respectively.
Earlier, in the JV race, Liyan Guo '01 set the tone for the day as he played the competition like a game of chess on his way to a first place finish in a blazing 27:18. Additionally, Ray Molnar '00 and Ryan Peoples '00 both improved on their career best times by a full minute. The big mover was Ashley Claiborne '99, who ran inspired and hammered out a 1:20 personal record.
In what originally looked to be a rebuilding year, the harriers have stepped up the intensity and are running like a well-oiled machine. Look for them to be firing on all seven cylinders in the weeks to come. Next weekend the team takes their hunger for respect to their home turf as they host a pre-nationals meet at Franklin Park.