South Bend, Ind. - The Saint Xavier University men's cross country team travelled to South Bend, Ind., Friday to run in the prestigious National Catholic Championships hosted by the University of Notre Dame. The meet featured 33 of the best Catholic collegiate teams from around the nation. The Cougars finished 15th overall among the 33 squads competing and eighth out of the 25 non-NCAA Division I teams. Leading the way for Saint Xavier was junior Evan Lowry (Horton, Mich./Hanover-Horton), finishing 70th among the 248 runners with a time of 27:30 for the five-mile course.
Lowry was followed by sophomore Matt Rychel (Tinley Park, Ill./Andrew) in 84th place at 27:40. Next was senior Emmanuel Gonzalez in 87th place with a time of 27:45, while junior Roy Witty (Mount Greenwood, Ill./Marist) was at 28:07 finishing in 101st place. Sophomore Daniel Hasty (Oak Lawn, Ill./Brother Rice) finished 106th at 28:13, sophomore Brandon Hummer (Willowbrook, Ill./Hinsdale South) was next at 130th in 28:36, sophomore Buck Hill (Streator, Ill./Ottawa-Marquette) in 132nd place at 28:39 and finally sophomore Andy Peters (Yellow Springs, Ohio/Yellow Springs) in 168th with a time of 29:25. "I'm starting to feel better about our future," said SXU men's cross country coach Ed McAllister. "While our times are not quite where I would like them yet, we are solidifying our pack with each meet. We are just getting over a bunch of illnesses and we will be making a solid move over the next few weeks. (Manny) Gonzalez ran the best race of his career and (Matt) Rychel is just starting to get back to last year's form. I see good things ahead for this team." Saint Xavier heads to Davenport, Iowa, on Friday, September 25, to run in the Brissman-Lundeen Invitational sponsored by Augustana College (Iowa). The men's race is scheduled for a 5 p.m. start Friday at Credit Island in Davenport.Click here for results from the 2009 National Catholic Championships