Battling a tough course and frigid weather, the Xavier men’s and women’s cross country teams competed in the Big East Cross Country Championships this past weekend. The races, which were held in Kenosha, Wisc., allowed both teams to showcase their talents against all conference opponents at once.
The men’s team, which took eighth place at the championships, were led by sophomore John Hautz andseniors Benjamin Bockoven and Garrett Knapik. Hautz posted the best time for the Musketeers with 26:22.70. This time earned him a 44th place finish. Bockoven and Knapik finished within one second of each another. Bockoven (26:36.10) was able to secure 46th place, while Knapik (26:37.90) received 48th place.
The women’s team, which took fifth place this weekend, had many strong performers. The team was led by senior Madeline Britton, who took eighth place overall in 20:51.80. This was the best ever single performance for Xavier at the Big East Championships since joining the conference in 2013. This performance also earned her All-Big East First Team honors, which was also a Musketeer first. The team also got a strong performance from freshman Jenna Clayworth, who took 23rd place at 21:32.60.
Sophomore Jane Onders said that she had looked forward to competing. “Overall, the race was a great experience,” she said. “The Big East Championship is always the race we look forward to all fall to show the other schools in the conference just how hard we have worked and how far we have come as a team.”
Although the team did not reach all of its goals, Onders said she was still pleased about its performance. Onders also mentioned that the team’s work is not done yet.
“We still have our regional meet left where we will get another chance to face some of these teams again and hopefully beat some of those teams that got us at Big East,” Onders said.
Both teams will look to build off of their Big East performances in two weeks at the NCAA Great Lakes Regional, which will be run in Terre Haute, Ind.
By: Colin Cooper ~Staff Writer~