UTM cross country leads pack at Union Invitational
Posted: Thursday, October 8, 2009 4:07 pm
The women’s squad finished the course with a total time of 1:41.25, for an average of 20.25 per scorer. The UT Martin men totaled a time of 2:15.27, averaging 27.05 per runner on the 8k course.
“All the freshmen ladies had large personal bests which improved the team’s average by a large margin,” UT Martin head coach Gordon Sanders said. “The men took full advantage of the rest week with personal bests garnered for all of them. It was a relief to see good performances across the board.”
On the women’s side, Skyhawk senior Shannon Wall continued her strong 2009 campaign, coming in second place with a 19.46 time in the 5k. A pair of freshmen in Emily Jones and Ellie Luze finished right behind Wall in third and fourth place, respectively, with times of 20.00 and 20.01. Laura Wind came in sixth place with her time of 20.53, while Andrea Lindley narrowly missed a top-10 finish, coming in 11th place (21.25).
“Although Shannon ran alone trying to close the gap on the lead runner, the rest paired up to push each other to their season’s best,” Sanders said. “It was fun to see the blue and orange fill the top 10 spots.”
Last week’s Ohio Valley Conference Runner of the Week Justin Cacaro finished in second place – first among collegiate runners – for the second time in as many weeks with his time of 25.34, which is the first time in program history a men’s runner has finished under 26 minutes in an 8k (five mile) event.
Allen Thurman produced a top-10 finish, placing ninth with his time of 27.11, and Ryan Pett (27.34) and Jimmy Watkins-Lynch (27.39) placed back-to-back finishes. Tallon Scott completed the course in 28.09, while Tyler Holmes (28.40) and Ross Ratkowski (29.49) rounded out the field for the Skyhawk men.
“By not letting himself get sucked into the fast first mile, Justin had to come from behind again to win the collegiate race and get the school record,” Sanders said. “Allen ran his standard perfect pace race for his best time to cancel last week’s dismal finish, while Ryan paced himself to a monster jump onto the next competitive plateau.”
The Skyhawks will take a well-deserved weekend off from competitive action before looking to retain their accumulated mid-season momentum at the University of Evansville Invitational on Oct. 17.