Experienced team gets Cross Country off to running start

The cross-country season got off to a running start on Sept. 4 at the Mountaintop Invitational hosted by Covenant College. Maryville College had several runners finish in the top 20 of both the men’s and women’s races, setting the pace for an exciting and rewarding season. For the four seniors on the team, two on each, they are hoping for a great season.

Senior Emily Guillaume finished in first place for the women’s race. When speaking with Guillaume, she regarded her first place win as “quite gratifying.”

“This race showed just a hint of the potential both [the] men’s and women’s teams have this year.” Said Guillaume.

Guillaume finished No. 2 in the same race last year, and in her final season she would like to go out with a bang.

Guillaume is not the only one who is expecting great things from the teams this year. In the Coaches’ Preseason Poll, MC women’s team came in No. 3 of all Cross Country teams in the USA South.

Junior Sean Hagstrom  finished at No. 2 on the men’s 5,000-meter (three mile) course.

“I am excited about the guy’s potential to be one of the fastest teams in the school’s history.” Said head coach Tyson Murphy.

Both teams have a balance of returning and new athletes. On the women’s team, three of the eight runners are freshman. The new members may just bring some new life to the team. There are four men that have never raced Cross Country before.

“We have great speed at this point, but not the endurance we need as a team.” Said Murphy.

Endurance is an easy fix. Keep a close eye out for further updates on the team in their seven additional races this season including the USA South Championships and the NCAA Regionals. The USA South Championships take place on Saturday, Oct. 31 and NCAA Regionals will be held on Saturday, Nov. 14.

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