Weekend Recap: October 1-3

EDITOR’S NOTE: We’ll continue to update this post throughout the weekend.

High-caliber competition meant high-caliber racing!

There have been some incredible performances in collegiate cross country already and we’re bound to see a lot more as the weekend progresses.

From The USTFCCCA InfoZoneMeets & Results | USTFCCCA Scoreboard

Here are a few meets we had our eye on from an exciting weekend!

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Joe Piane Notre Dame Invitational

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The Joe Piane Notre Dame Invitational didn’t disappoint on Friday.

Women’s Blue Division 5k

The Women’s Blue Division 5k headlined the morning, as 12 nationally-ranked teams from the most recent NCAA DI Women’s National Coaches’ Poll were in action, including five top-10 squads. When the dust settled, co-No. 1 NC State blew the doors off everybody else in the team race, taking home the crown with just 38 points. The Wolfpack went 3-6-8-9-12 and sent a total of four runners across the finish line before runner-up No. 3 New Mexico, which finished with 94 points, saw two of its own. No. 6 Alabama finished third with 147 points and was led by reigning NCAA individual champion Mercy Chelangat and Flomena Asekol, who went 1-2 individually in 16:10.3 and 16:10.7, respectively. No. 8 Washington (189) and No. 7 Minnesota (192) rounded out the top-5 teams.

Men’s Blue Division 5 Mile

The Men’s Blue Division 5 Mile didn’t go according to the form chart. No. 19 Furman, which came in as the fifth highest-ranked team in the field, led from the start and posted a 21-point win over No. 25 Michigan, 129-150. What happened to those other four teams ranked higher than the Paladins? Well, No. 2 Notre Dame finished 11th, No. 10 Butler took third, No. 15 Alabama was sixth and No. 18 Ole Miss placed eighth. No. 29 Florida State finished fourth in the team standings with 204 points and was the only squad in the race with two top-10 individuals: meet champion Adriaan Wildschutt, who covered the 5-mile tract in 23:06.7 to remain undefeated this season, and Ahmed Muhumed, who finished seventh.

Women’s Gold Division 5k

California Baptist, which reached as high as 28th in the NCAA DI Women’s National Coaches’ Poll last year, impressed in the Women’s Gold Division 5k. The Lancers rolled to an 88-point victory over Charlotte. CBU put three runners in the top-10, led by individual runner-up Greta Karinauskiaite. Joyce Kimeli of Auburn won the individual title in 17:05.5 to pace the Tigers to a third-place finish as a team. Akron (178) and Eastern Kentucky (233) rounded out the top-5.

Men’s Gold Division 5 Mile

California Baptist took control after 5k and pulled away to win the team title in the Men’s Gold Division 5 Mile. The Lancers put three runners in the top-8 and finished with 62 points, 16 fewer than runner-up Utah Valley. Alec Sandusky gave Cincinnati the ultimate low stick with his individual title in 24:17.2 and paced them to a third-place finish as a team. IUPUI (130) and Youngstown State (194) rounded out the top-5.

Live in the Lou Cross Country Classic

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E.P. “Tom” Sawyer Park in Louisville, Kentucky, welcomed one of the largest fields of the weekend. Later this year, it will host the 2021 NCAA Division I Cross Country Southeast Regional Championships as well as the 2021 NCAA Division III Cross Country Championships.

Men 8k CC Gold

Isaac Harding and his Grand Valley State teammates ran well; Wisconsin just ran a little bit better. Harding captured the individual title in 23:16.7, gave the top-ranked NCAA DII Lakers an ultimate low stick and saw teammate Tanner Chada also finish in the top-5, but the 14th-ranked NCAA DI Badgers put their entire scoring lineup in the top-10 – led by Olin Hacker’s runner-up effort – and captured the team title. Wisconsin finished with 26 points, compared to GVSU’s 67. Eastern Illinois (174), Louisville (196) and Lipscomb (206) rounded out the top-5 teams.

Women 5k CC Gold

Ceili McCabe of West Virginia and the eighth-ranked Michigan Wolverines have something in common: they both ran away with titles on Saturday. McCabe won the individual crown in 16:27.8, more than 13 seconds faster than the runner-up. Michigan put four runners in the top-10 and cruised to a 36-point win over NCAA DI No. 26 Wisconsin, 39-75. McCabe helped the Mountaineers to a third-place team finish with 122 points, followed by Lipscomb (205) and Middle Tennessee (213).

There was also the Battle of No. 1 teams from three different collegiate divisions between NCAA DII No. 1 Grand Valley State, NCAA DIII No. 1 Johns Hopkins and NAIA No. 1 St. Francis (Ill.). Would you believe that those teams finished in that exact order? The Lakers were sixth, followed by the Blue Jays in 11th and the Saints in 14th.

Men 8k CC Blue

It came down to a sprint for the individual title. The same couldn’t be said for the team race. Gidion Sigei of Lincoln Memorial edged Kyle Mastin of Northern Kentucky by 0.6 seconds at the finish line, 24:03.2 to 24:03.8. Grand Valley State showcased its depth and crushed the competition, winning by more than 100 points. The Lakers finished with 84 points, 103 fewer than runner-up Purdue Fort Wayne. NCAA DII No. 20 Lewis (240), NCAA DI Southeast Missouri (266) and NCAA DI USC Upstate (285) rounded out the top-5.

Women 5k CC Blue

Abby Herring provided Marshall with the lowest individual score possible, but Grand Valley State put together the lowest team score. Herring won the individual title in 17:45.7 to help the Thundering Herd to a runner-up finish in the team standings to the top-ranked NCAA DII Lakers, who won going away, 94-149. NCAA DI Northern Kentucky (204), NCAA DI Southeast Missouri (224) and NAIA No. 5 Aquinas (Mich.) (230) rounded out the top-5.

Men 8k CC Silver

Simon Heys of Wilmington (Ohio) and fifth-ranked MIT emerged victorious in the de facto Pre-National Invitational. Heys sat third, two seconds off the lead, at the 3900m split, but held strong over the last 4100m and pulled away late to win the individual title in 24:11.4. The Engineers, who came into the meet as the highest-ranked program, proved it with their 90-point win over No. 9 Claremont-Mudd-Scripps, 50-140. No. 16 Emory finished a close third with 142 points, followed by No. 13 UW-La Crosse (169) and No. 6 North Central (Ill.) (172) in fourth and fifth, respectively.

Women 6k CC Silver

Evie Bultemeyer of Trine and fourth-ranked Claremont-Mudd-Scripps cruised to individual and team titles, respectively. Butlemeyer picked up where she left off two years ago, proving herself to be among the best at the NCAA DIII level. She covered the 5k tract in 21:32.3, nearly 17 seconds faster than the runner-up. The Athenas made quick work of the team race, beating No. 14 UW-La Crosse, 43-70. No. 16 Calvin finished a distant third with 153 points, followed by No. 23 Emory (170) and No. 7 MIT (172).

Paul Short Run

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Razor-thin margins decided team titles at the Paul Short Run!

Men’s College Gold Race

Just one point separated the top two teams with North Carolina taking home the title with 56 points over Villanova’s 57. Coincidentally, those two shared the No. 23 spot in the latest NCAA DI National Coaches’ Poll, and here each had its top-3 among the top-10 individuals with the Wildcats holding the early edge at 2-3-7 vs. UNC’s 5-8-10. But the Tar Heels followed with scorers in the 14-19 positions while Nova finished with 16-29 (UNC’s 1-5 spread was a tight 12.9 seconds). Rounding out the top-5 teams were Princeton (74 with a 1-5 spread of just 9.7 seconds), No. 16 Utah State (77) and Stony Brook (210). NCAA DII No. 3 Adams State finished in seventh (259) and NCAA DIII t-No. 6 John Carroll was 15th (463) in the 39-team race comprised predominantly of NCAA DI programs. Individual honors went to Utah State’s Caleb Garnica, who covered the 8k course in 23:29.4, ahead of the Villanova duo of Josh Phillips (23:31.3) and Haftu Strintzos (23:33.9).

Women’s College Gold Race

A tiebreaker was needed to separate Northern Arizona and Villanova, who both scored 85 points. The Lumberjacks, ranked t-No. 12 in the NCAA DI National Coaches’ Poll, earned the victory via a 3-2 decision in the tiebreaker process, as individual winner Taryn O’Neill was followed by scorers in places 7-23-25-29, compared to the Wildcats’ 3-5-6-35-36. Villanova proved much stronger than their recent standing in the National Coaches’ Poll, where they received just one vote. Following closely in third and fourth team-wise were Utah State (93) and No. 15 Georgetown (101), while NCAA DII No. 3 Adams State completed the top-5 in fifth with 198 points. Individually, O’Neill (19:54.8) outdueled Grace Forbes of Rice (19:58.4).

Men’s College Brown Race

In a cross-division battle, NCAA DII RV Southern Connecticut State held off NCAA DIII RV RPI, 90-114. They were followed by NCAA DIII Amherst (191), NCAA DII Concord (W.Va.) (211) and Penn (218). RPI’s Matthew Lecky was the individual winner in 24:30.2.

Women’s College Brown Race

Miami (Fla.) earned the team title with 70 points. NCAA DIII No. 8 Dickinson – led by the overall individual 1-2 of Isabel Cardi (20:54.7) and Elaina Clancy (21:01.1) – took runner-up honors with 167. Rounding out the top-5 teams were Buffalo (173), NCAA DIII No. 12 Amherst (222) and NCAA DIII No. 23 Carnegie Mellon (256).

Chile Pepper Festival

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Cross-divisional racing was at its finest on Friday at the Chile Pepper Festival.

McDonnel Memorial College Men’s Race

It was a virtual parade for top NCAA DII programs, as co-No. 1 Colorado School of Mines forged a comfortable victory with 39 points and was followed in the team standings by fellow division-mates. The Orediggers were impressive, placing three in the top-10 and six in the top-20. NCAA DIIs No. 4 Augustana (S.D.) (131) and No. 18 Western Colorado (178) were 2nd and 3rd, respectively. Host Arkansas, which rested many of its top runners, earned 4th in a tiebreaker over NCAA DII No. 8 Alabama-Huntsville as each tallied 192 points. Zouhair Talbi of NAIA No. 11 Oklahoma City broke away in the late stages to win individual honors over the Razorbacks’ Myles Richter by 5 seconds in 23:28.5 with Dillon Powell of Mines 3rd in 23:39.7.

College Women’s Race

Host No. 10 Arkansas cruised to a ninth-straight victory with 45 points over Tulsa (132). Impressive in third was NCAA DII No. 4 Augustana (S.D.) (185) ahead of Nebraska (187) and LSU (191). NCAA DII No. 2 Colorado School of Mines was 6th with 205 points. The Razorbacks’ Krissy Gear stormed to individual honors with a 16:24.3 clocking over the 5k course, with Katy McDonald of LSU runner-up in 16:50.5.

Men’s Collegiate Prairie Fire Pepper Race

NCAA DII Southwest Baptist won the team crown with 56 points over NCAA DII Oklahoma Baptist (81). Rounding out the top-5 were NCAA DII East Central (101), NCAA DII Rogers State (138) and NAIA RV Benedictine (Kan.) (206). Gudisa Adnow of NJCAA DI Fort Scott (Kan.) CC 25:09.9 cruised to the 8k individual title in 25:09.9, with Berket Mesele of NCAA DII Christian Brothers runner-up in 25:35.0.

Women’s Collegiate Prairie Fire Pepper Race

NCAA DII Oklahoma Christian, led by individual winner Kenya Bailey, claimed the team title with 87 points over NCAA DII Harding (113). NCAA DII Missouri S&T (140), NAIA No. 24 Hastings (159) and NJCAA DI No. 9 Cloud County (Kan.) CC (170) rounded out the top-5. NJCAA DII No. 2 Cowley (Kan.) finished 8th with 221 points. Bailey scored individual honors with a 17:55.6 time for 5k over Johanna Wistokat of NCAA DII Christian Brothers (18:03.3).

Sacramento State XC Invitational

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Stanford tuned up for the Nuttycombe Wisconsin Invitational and got some valuable race experience under its belt at the Sacramento State XC Invitational on Friday.

The Cardinal’s fourth-ranked women easily captured the team title with 16 points, 67 fewer than runner-up Sacramento State. Zofia Dudek led the way with an individual title in her season debut, covering the 6k tract in 20:47.3. Other top-5 athletes for Stanford were Audrey Dadamio (2nd, 20:53.0), Christina Aragon (3rd, 20:56.2) and Audrey Suarez (4th, 20:56.3).

California topped the third-ranked Cardinal by just one point in the men’s race, 37-38. It came down to a sprint for the team title between Daniel Winek of Cal and John Lester of Stanford: Winek edged Lester at the finish line by 0.1 seconds to send the Golden Bears to victory.

UW-Eau Claire Blugold Invitational

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Multiple top-35 programs from the most recent NCAA DIII National Coaches’ Polls toed the starting line on Friday at the Blugold Invitational.

It’s safe to say No. 8 UW-Whitewater came ready to run in the men’s 8k race. David Fassbender captured the individual title in 24:59.9 and three other Warhawks finished in the top-10 as they rolled to the team title over three other top-35 programs. UW-Whitewater finished with 38 points, 40 fewer than runner-up Carleton. No. 31 UW-Oshkosh took third with 103 points, followed by No. 12 St. Olaf in fourth and No. 18 UW-Eau Claire in fifth, who were separated by a tiebreaker.

A tiebreaker decided the women’s team title between No. 22 UW-Eau Claire and No. 17 Carleton. The Knights had the overall lead through two finishers (2-7 to 5-14), but the Blugold stormed back with three of the next six finishers to wrest the crown away. UW-Eau Claire scored 70 points at 5-14-15-16-20, while Carleton matched that total, but came through at 2-7-17-19-25. No. 32 St. Olaf finished third with 94 points. Fiona Smith of St. Benedict earned the individual title in 21:37.3 for the 6k course.