Both the Men’s and Women’s Cross Country teams made strong statements on Saturday at the Ted Owen Invitational at Stanley Quarter Park in New Britain. Both teams finished first at a course that will hold the NEC Championships in late October.
The men were lead by the three-time all-NEC senior runner Jacob Gurzler, who finished the race third overall with a time of 26:20. Gurlzer finished just behind Boston University’s Eric Ashe and David Proctor. Sophomore Tyler Dinaan finished 15 seconds after Gurzler and placed fifth overall.
After Gurlzer and Dinaan, the Bobcats were paced by Dan Martin, Jack McDonald, Keith Bushey, and James Pellerano. All six Bobcats had a strong overall showing as they all finished in the top 20.
Freshman John Greenlaw finished the race in 29th and left the Bobcats as the only team without a runner outside the top 30.
The first place finish was the first for the Bobcats this season and it came two weeks after a second place finish in the Seawolves Invitational at Stony Brook, NY.
It was no surprise that the women were lead by sophomore Kristen Stevens. Stevens finished second overall with a time of 17:31. The only runner to beat Stevens was Boston University’s Andrea Walkonen who finished with a time of 17:06.
Twenty-fiveseconds behind Stevens was sophomore Lindsey Pierret who earned herself a fourth place finish. Joining Stevens and Pierret in the top 10 was senior Susan Ashe, who finished tenth with a time of 18:24. Rounding out the Bobcats top five runners were freshman Kelly Sorrell and senior Abbey Gosling.
Following with their male counterparts, the women’s team was also coming off a second place finish in the Seawolves Invitational.
The wins give both Bobcat teams a psychological advantage over their NEC foes. Both teams defeated the likes of Sacred Heart, Mount St. Mary’s, Fairleigh Dickinson, Saint Francis NY, Wagner, CCSU, and Monmouth.
The Bobcats return to action on Friday Sept. 21, when they will host the Quinnipiac Invitational held on campus. Both teams will look to defend their titles from last season. The women’s race is set to begin at 4 p.m. and the men’s will start at 4:45 p.m.