Cross Country competes in conference meet, looks towards the future

Ian Kreider

The Flashes laced up for the MAC championship with a common goal in mind:

Improvement.

Both the men’s and women’s teams are very young with first-year coach Tyler Griffin manning the helm. For Griffin, improvement of the young core is crucial.

“We’re a couple pieces away from really being where we want to be,” Griffin said. “But we are moving in the right direction, and I look forward to building around this team.” 

The men’s team finished in eighth place out of nine total teams. This is an improvement from last year when they finished last with 257 points. (The next closest team had 219 points.)

There was also individual improvement. Clark Bookman finished 43rd (26:47) last year. On Saturday, he finished 16th (25:14). Bookman’s sophomore campaign has been one of constant improvement. He ran 25:55 on the same course about a month ago. The sophomore has shown that he will play a key role for the Flashes moving forward.

Freshman Grzegorz Kunc finished 40th (25:49). Junior Brandon Avers followed closely behind in 42nd (25:53). Senior Nick Schank and sophomore Sam Goodman rounded out the top five for the Flashes finishing 48th (26:03) and 59th (26:22) respectively.

The women’s team also showed some improvement. Freshman Maddie Dunlap led the way with a 23rd place finish (21:45). Last year the Flashes did not have a runner in the top 50. Sophomore Jamie Adams took 74th (23:05) with Nicole Fleming not far behind in 75th (23:06). Senior Robin Foster and Sophomore Olivia Davis finished in 82nd (23:21) and 83rd (23:22). The women’s team finished 12th out of 12 teams. 

Coach Griffin said he may send a few runners to regionals on Nov. 10, but he declined to comment on who specifically.

Ian Krieder is a sports reporter. Contact him a [email protected]