Men’s and women’s cross country started the season with two wins at the Westminster Academy Invitational in Lauderdale Lakes, Fla.
The women’s team placed fi rst over the University of Miami and Florida Atlantic University with a team score of 20 points. Senior Kelly Perzanowski took fi rst place and the Eagles rounded off the invitational with fi ve runners in the top ten. The men’s team placed fi rst over the University of Miami, Florida Atlantic University and Florida International University with a team score of 23 points. Nathan Kandie, So., led his team with a fi rst place fi nish. Junior Austin Boetje, senior Argeo Cruz, freshman Charles Bengston, senior Chris Rudloff and freshman Courtland Bernard joined Kandie in the top ten.
Starting off the season with two wins will do nothing but help prepare both teams for the rest of the season.
“It gave them a lot of confi dence going into the season which is what they need. It is our toughest schedule ever,” head coach Cassandra Goodman said.
Next stop for both teams is the University of Florida’s Mountain Dew Invitational this Saturday. The teams have four meets before their conference on Nov. 2 in Nashville, Tennessee. Both teams made it to the NCAA Regional Championship last year with the men’s team placing 20th. The men’s cross country team is predicted to place fourth at this season’s Atlantic Sun Conference, according to a preseason poll by league coaches. Cruz returns after a win at the FGCU Cross Country Invitational last season and placing 16th at the Atlantic Sun Championship. Also returning for his senior year is Chris Rudloff who placed 14th at the Atlantic Sun Championship.
The women’s cross country team placed seventh last year at the Atlantic Sun Championship. Perzanowski placed 13th at the Atlantic Sun Championship last year with an FGCU record for the fastest time in a 5K. Sophomore Courtney Corradetti returns from a 34th place fi nish at the Atlantic Sun Championship. The team is predicted to place seventh at this season’s Atlantic Sun Conference according to the same poll by league coaches.
With a win by both teams at the fi rst event of the season, the runners head into the season on a positive note