With a seventh-place finish at the Big Ten championships in the rearview mirror, the Gophers are going into the NCAA Midwest regional meet on Friday and focusing on qualifying for nationals. Redshirt junior Christian Skaret said the team has to use the poor performance at the conference championships as fuel for improvement at regionals. “Any time you go home with your tail between your legs, that feeling definitely sticks in your mind for quite some time,” he said. “We definitely want to use it as motivation.”
The Gophers men’s cross country team stood victorious on Friday, sweeping the top five spots at the Fall Finale. Redshirt junior Matt Jergenson led the pack, followed by redshirt freshman Matt Welch. Jergenson said the team’s success was largely due to its focus and preparation for the meet. “We were able to come into the race focused, and we were able to run as a team well,” Jergenson said.
To be successful, a dynamic duo must carry a few attributes — chemistry, longevity and a catchy nickname. Redshirt freshmen Eric Colvin and Wayde Hall are no exception. Originating as partners in crime on the Stillwater High School cross country team, the seemingly inseparable teammates have continued their running careers at Minnesota. “Obviously, one person has to do better in the race,” Colvin said. “But usually we know each other well enough [that we] have to be humble around each other, but we don’t hold any hard feelings.”
After resting its top runners last weekend, the Gophers women’s cross country team should be fresh for the Big Ten championships in Iowa City, Iowa, this Sunday. Head coach Sarah Hopkins said the meet is going to be important, but she doesn’t want her runners to overthink it.
After a long day of training, redshirt sophomore Riley Macon journeyed to Sanford’s dining hall last Friday evening, where he proceeded to eat three plates of food, a salad and a bowl of cereal. The Gophers typically run between 60 and 85 miles a week, senior captain Blayne Dulian said, and because of that, eating mass amounts of food is necessary to refuel their bodies. Dulian said he averages 3,500 calories per day.
The Gophers’ top runners were resting last weekend, but multiple members of the team’s second group set personal records at Jack’s Twilight Run on Saturday. The unit was led by freshman Emily Castanias, who ran unattached and finished first among all women with a time of 22:03.4 in the 6K. Redshirt freshman Madeline Strandemo wasn’t far behind, finishing second among women at 22:10.1. Freshman Patty O’Brien followed, also running unattached.
The Gophers will showcase their younger racers this weekend at Jack’s Twilight Run. In preparation for the Big Ten championships in early November, Minnesota’s top runners will be resting, but head coach Sarah Hopkins said she expects younger team members to compete at a high level. “We do have a really young group, and I think with a young group comes that desire to really prove yourself,” she said. “I think that’ll add a little fuel to the fire.”
The Gophers women’s cross country team came into the Wisconsin adidas Invitational looking for a top-15 finish. Minnesota accomplished that Friday, finishing 15th in a field of 38, which included some of the top teams in the country. Head coach Sarah Hopkins gave the team a “B.” “You can’t be too upset when you put up a solid performance at this time of year,” Hopkins said. Redshirt juniors Liz Berkholtz, Becca Dyson and Kaila Urick led Minnesota.
The Gophers are in the thick of their season and starting to hit their stride. Last week, the men’s cross country team cracked the top 30 of the national coaches poll for the first time this season, coming in at No. 27. The ranking comes after a third-place finish at their most recent meet, the Roy Griak Invitational. Heading into the Wisconsin adidas Invitational on Friday, the Gophers are looking to build off their recent successes. Senior Blayne Dulian said depth has been important to get to this point in the season.
While many Minnesotans had their eyes glued to their ...READ MORE