A season of Cross Country in review
Assistant Sports Editor
FGCU men’s and women’s cross country will travel to Tallahassee, Florida to compete in the NCAA south regional competition on Friday, Oct. 9 at 8:30 a.m. Both teams have competed in five meets this year. The men’s team has won two meets and placed third in another. The women’s team came in second once.
On the men’s side, the Eagles won the FAU Invitational with four Eagles finishing in the top-10. The top finisher for the Eagles was Lucas Kiprotich, who placed second overall. Ronny Greenup finished in fourth place.
On the women’s side, the Eagles placed fifth in the FAU Invitational. Carley Lutzow won the meet with a time of 17:35, winning by almost 45 seconds.
In the next race for the Eagles, the men took home third and the women placed seventh in the Fordham Fiasco. The men were led by Kiprotich, who placed third with an 8 km time of 26:07. The women were led by freshman Jillian Felton, who had a 5 km time of 20:08 to give her 22nd place.
The end of September did not fare well for either teams. In the Paul Short Run, the men’s team finished 31st out of 41 teams, with the top Eagle finishing 90th. The women fared better finishing 25th, and Lutzow finished third, collecting her second top-3 of the season.
After this race, Kiprotich and Lutzow put themselves in the FGCU record book with Lutzow having the fifth fastest 6k time (after already holding the third spot), and Kiprotich taking the fastest 8k sophomore time.
Due to unforeseen circumstances, the Eagles had to cancel the final meet of the regular season at FSU but switched locations to USF midweek. This meet gave the men their second win of the season on the strong run of Kiprotich, who won the meet. Greenup placed fifth, and to round out the top-10 for Eagles, Boniface Mutai placed eighth.
The women placed second on the feet of Lutzow, who won the meet one second slower than her previous win at the FAU Invitational (17:36).
To start the postseason, the Eagle’s traveled to the same place as the Fordham Fiasco to take on the rest of the ASUN conference.
The men’s team placed fifth, with Jan Figueroa scoring first for the Eagles at 25th place. On the women’s side, the team placed fourth. Lutzow earned First-Team All Conference after finishing third. She is the second-highest scoring Eagle in FGCU history. This was also her second season getting First-Team honors.
Going into the NCAA south regional meet, the Eagles will look to challenge themselves and other teams to make it to the National Championship Race.