Facing nearly identical conditions to the wet and muddy meet they ran two weeks earlier at Allegheny College, the men’s cross country team looked like a completely different team on Saturday when they competed at SUNY Geneseo. Although they still managed to finish fourth out of 16 teams and a few members of the team ran well, overall it was a disappointing effort from a team that is winding down its season and rapidly approaching the UAA Championships.

“We didn’t run very well. We had been looking better and better for three straight meets, and [last] Saturday’s was not a good one,” Head Coach John Izzo said. “It was a horrible day weather-wise, and we didn’t handle it very well. No excuses, we just did not get the job done. On a positive note, I think maybe we have our one bad one out of the way now.”

Unlike the Allegheny race, which began at a slower pace because of a steep incline to start, the Geneseo race was fast out of the gate, and the team got separated from each other right from the start.

“It was our first introduction to a race quite that size, and the team dynamic is key. For the last two weeks we had been training very well, staying together as a group, but once they got separated they weren’t able to find each other,” Izzo said.

Regaining the top spot on the team was junior Dan Duett, who was 14th overall with a time of 27:07. He was followed by last week’s top finisher, freshman Andrew Whitbeck, who was 23rd overall, crossing the line in 27:34. Sophomore Ian Slattery ran 27:58, good enough for 34th place. A newcomer to the top five, freshman Joseph Lust finished in 38th place with a time of 28:05. He was closely tailed by sophomore Chris Nolan and junior Pete Nabozny, who were 40th and 41st overall, finishing in 28:09 and 28:10 respectively. Rounding out the top seven for the men was sophomore Kevin McGettrick, whose time of 28:28 put him 53rd.

The men will not have a meet this weekend, participating instead in the Alumni Fun Run as a part of Meliora Weekend. Their next competition will come on Oct. 18 when they host the Yellowjacket Invitational. “It will be a very good meet. Some top teams are coming, including a number of nationally ranked teams. It will be a very good test for us,” Izzo said.

Swidler can be reached at dswidler@campustimes.org.

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