Cross Country Roundup: Western International Invitational

Cross Country Roundup: Western International Invitational
HAMILTON, Ont. - Recapping the Western International Invitational.

Western
LONDON, Ont. - For the second week in a row the Western Mustangs women's cross country team came out on top, taking first place at the 39th Annual Western International, hosted at the Thames Valley Golf Course on Saturday morning. The Mustangs women's team claimed victory with an overall team score of 46 while the men's team took ninth place in their meet, posting a score of 220.

The win was the second consecutive win for the Mustangs women who also claimed victory at the McGill Open last weekend, it's also the first time in 15 years that the Mustangs won first place at their signature home event. Despite a slower course due to the weather Western broke its school record for overall team time by 26 seconds.

Running a 5 KM race, Amanda Truelove was the top Mustangs finisher on the day claiming second place with a time of 18:05. Two other Mustangs (Becky Pieterson - 18:31, and Grace Kary - 18:36) also finished within the top 10 in eighth and ninth place respectively. Bridget Pyke  (18:45) and Katie Bell (18:51) rounded out the Mustangs top five finishers, giving them an overall team score of 46.

The Queen's Gaels' Victoria Coates won the individual title in 17:48 helping her team to a third place overall finish with 105 points, while the Toronto Varsity Blues took second with 94 points.

On the men's side Kevin Blackney led the Western runners on Saturday, finishing in 21st place with a time of 26:04 on the 8 KM course. Phil Parrot-Migas was the second fastest Mustangs runner placing 25th in a 26:10. Chris Balestrini (26:30), Shane Roberts (27:10), and Seth Marcaccio (27:23) also counted toward the Mustangs team score of 220. Blackney's, Parrot-Migas', and Balestrini's times were all personal bests on the Thames Valley course.

The Laval Rouge et Or claimed the overall title with a team score of 68 points with the Oakland Grizzlies in second at 106 points to barely edge out the Queen's Gaels who took third with 107 points. Guelph's Yves Sikubwabo won the individual title in a time of 25:17.

Saturday's event, which was the largest field in Western International history with 18 teams and 354 athletes, served as a small preview for the upcoming CIS Cross Country Championships that will be held for the second consecutive year at Thames Valley on November 9.

Next up for the Mustangs cross country teams is the Guelph Open scheduled for Saturday, Sept. 28.

Source: Western Sports Info 

McMaster
After a gruelling, but successful summer season, the Marauder cross country teams opened the 2013  season at the Western International meet in London on Sept. 21.

Courtney Patterson led the way for the Marauders in McDonald's absence, completing the five-kilometre course in 18:16 to finish third overall. Former Western Mustang Kierstin Myers scored second for McMaster, placing 21st overall, while first-year Emily Nowak crossed the line just behind Myers and finished first among CIS rookies at the meet.

Phoebe Cseresnyes – a highschool standout while at Westdale and top Marauder recruit – was poised to finish among the top 20 before pulling up with an injury in the last kilometre of the race.

McMaster's men were without five of their top seven runners in London, as Lionel Sanders, Connor Darlington, Taylor Reid, Taylor Forbes and Austen Forbes all sat out of the season-opening meet.

The Marauders were short-staffed due to the rigorous summer schedule. The most conspicuous absence for the McMaster women was Maddy McDonald, the sophomore who most recently climbed the podium in Medellin, Colombia, where she finished second in the 3000m event at the Junior Pan American Athletics Championships in August.

It fell to team captain Blair Morgan to score first for the short-staffed Marauders, finishing the eight-kilometre course in 25:58 to place 17th overall. Second-year Gabe Ghiglione placed 23rd to score second, while first-year Paul Rochus enjoyed a strong outing in his first appearance for McMaster, ranking as the top CIS rookie at the meet and finishing 31st in 26:21.

Eric Barry and rookie Nick Belore completed the scoring for the Marauders, placing 43rd and 45th respectively on Sept. 21.

McMaster will boast some important reinforcements when they return to competition in a week's time. McDonald, Sanders and Taylor Forbes are all slated to make their season debuts when the Marauders travel to Guelph to take part in the Vic Matthews Open on Saturday, September 28.

Source: McMaster Sports Info

Queen’s
LONDON, Ont. (September 21, 2013) - Victoria Coates (Newmarket, Ont.) took first place in the women's 5km race at the Western Invitational on Saturday while Jeff Archer (Kingston, Ont.) took home second place in the men's 8km.

Both the men's and women's teams finished in third place.

Coates led the way for the women's side in a time of 17:48 which was 17 second ahead of the second place runner. Colleen Wilson finished next for the Gaels in 11th place at a time of 18:42 followed by Charlotte Dunlap in 17th at 18:52 and Veronica Allan rounded out the Gaels in the top 25 with a time of 19:02 which placed her 23rd.

On the men's side Archer finished in a time of 25:26 missing out on the first place runner from Guelph by nine seconds. Two other Gaels had top six placings as David Cashin finished fifth at a time of 25:36 and Tyson Loney finished sixth at 25:41. The men's team narrowly missed finishing second with 107 total points to the Oakland Grizzlies 106.

Next up for Queen's is a meet in Guelph hosted by the Gryphons on September 28th.

Source: Queen’s Sports Info

Laurier
LONDON, Ont. (September 22, 2013) - Wilfrid Laurier cross country team member Adam Cornwall of St. Mary's, Ont., made school history Saturday afternoon as he finished 10th at the Western Invitational held at Thames Valley Golf Club.

Cornwall's finish was the best ever by a Laurier runner at the event. The previous best finish in the individual competition was a 27th place showing by Shoaib Ikram back in 2010. Making the accomplishment even more impressive was that the Western Invitational was hosting its largest field ever and featured a number of All-Canadians from the previous season.

Thanks to Cornwall's record-setting run, the Golden Hawks finished 12th as a team out of 18 teams competing. 

In the women's competition, the Hawks finished 16th out of 18 teams and were led by second year runner Sarah Cranmer-Byng of Mississauga, Ont., who finished 61st.

The Golden Hawks will be back in action on Saturday, September 28 when they head to Guelph to compete in the New Balance Vic Matthews Open.

Source: Laurier Sports Info

Toronto
Colleen and Kelly Hennessy finished fifth and seventh, respectively, in leading the University of Toronto Varsity Blues women's cross country team to a second-place finish at the 2013 Western Invitational on Saturday, Sept. 21 in London, Ont.
 
The Blues finished with a combined team score of 94 points, behind the host Mustangs (46). Queen's placed third with 105 points. 

Colleen Hennessy (Oakville) crossed the finish line in 18:21, while her sister, Kelly, was two spots behind in 18:27. Charlotte Marcotte Toale placed 14th in the 5km race with a time of 18:48, while Honor Walmsley was 19th in 18:57. 

Toronto's men placed 11th overall with a score of 273 points. The Laval Rouge et Or took the team title with 68 points. 

Second-year standout Sacha Smart of Toronto was the first Varsity Blue to cross the 8km race, placing 24th in a time of 26:08. 
 
The Varsity Blues return to action next Saturday, September 28 as they head to Guelph, Ont., for the New Balance Vic Matthews Open. 

Source: Toronto Sports Info

Waterloo
In the first race of the year at the Western Invitational, the Waterloo Warriors placed 12th in the women's field, 50 points back of defending CIS champions Guelph and 13th in the men's field several points back of their cross-town rivals, Laurier. 18 teams from Ontario, USA, and Quebec competed.
 
The Warrior Women were missing several runners from last year's team but still showed that they will be competitive this year. They were led by 4th year runner, Kristen Flannagan (Kitchener) who ran to a 34th place finish with a time of 19.16 for the 5km race. She was closely followed by Heather Dimond (Orangeville) (Orangeville),(37th and 19.18). Other counters were 3 rookies, Dahlia Malek (Toronto) (Toronto) , Emily Nichols (Bracebridge) (Bracebridge), and Lisa Flemming (Bracebridge) (Bracebridge).  Also running were Katie Hayes (Kitchener) Rachel McInnis (London). The field  had 163 runners in total.
 
The men ran 12 runners in a field of 156 runners in the 8km race. This year's team is relatively inexperienced as the only true verteran runner is Michael Stewart (Mason). The 5 counters were Michael Stewart (Mason) (4th year, 48th in 26.42), Dan Fournier (2nd year, 77th, 27.18), Jason Laporta (2nd year,119th, 28.31), Ryan Santos (Carleton Place) (4th year, 121st, 28.32), and Spencer Leckie (Bright's Grove) (4th year rookie runner, 141st, 30.08). All the other runners were running their first university race and showed great promise for the future of the team. They were Jesse Burt (Drumbo) (Drumbo), John-Paul Violante (Unionville), Tyler Chuang (Mississauga) (Mississauga), TianShi NIng (Toronto), Hadi El-Shuyeb (Mississauga), Spencer Kelly (Windsor) (Windsor), and Andrew Wong (Burlington) .
 
Next up for the team is the Guelph Open on Sat. Sept. 28.

Source: Waterloo Sports Info

York
The York University Lions men's and women's cross country teams both finished in 14th place in the team standings at the 39th annual Western International at Thames Valley Golf Club in London, Ont., on Saturday (Sept. 21).
 
The top finisher for the Lions was Suraj Sharma (Brampton, Ont.), who finished in 40th place in a field of 156 runners. He crossed the line in the 8km race in a time of 26:35. 
 
The rest of the team included Harishan Karunenthiran (Brampton, Ont.), who was 102nd in a time of 27:49, Jamie Tarling (Caledon, Ont.) in 111th place (28:01), Sam Neal (Calgary) in 124th place (28:37) and rookie Brandon Belan (Espanola, Ont.) in 131st place (29:28).
 
In the 5km women's race, the leading York runner was rookie Maria Markovac (Toronto) for the second straight week. She finished in 84th place in a time of 19:59.
 
Giulia Ferrante (Maple, Ont.) was the second Lion to finish the race, in 107th place in a time of 20:34. Behind her were Emily McGaugh (Brampton, Ont.) in 110th place (20:38), Veera Sethuraman (Pleasanton, Calif.) in 120th place (20:50) and Darya Chenskikh (Almaty, Kazahkstan) in 132nd place (21:10).
 
The Lions will be back in action again this weekend when they travel to Waterloo, Ont., for the Don Mills Open beginning at 9 a.m.

Source: York Sports Info