Mon, Sep. 29, 2008 - [Men's Cross Country]
CHICAGO - Led by freshman Matt Rychel (Tinley Park, Ill./Andrew), the Saint Xavier University men's cross country team stayed close to home on Saturday, September 27, racing at the prestigious Sean Earl Invitational sponsored by Loyola University (Ill.) at Montrose Harbor in Chicago. The meet was comprised of some of the best collegiate cross country teams throughout the Midwest in all divisions. The team title was taken by defending NAIA national champion Malone College (Ohio), who edged out University of Illinois for the team title. The Cougars finished 26th overall out of the 35 teams participating in Saturday's 8K (8,000 meters) meet. Rychel finished in 150th place among the 371 runners in a time of 27:45. Right behind Rychel was freshman Brandon Hummer (Willowbrook, Ill./Hinsdale South) in 171st place at 28:01. He was followed by freshman Dan Gruzwalski (Romeo, Mich./Romeo) in 192nd place with a time of 28:21, sophomore Roy Witty (Mount Greenwood, Ill./Marist) in 199th at 28:27, freshman Buck Hill (Streator, Ill./Ottawa-Marquette) in 207th at 28:35, freshman Andy Peters (Yellow Springs, Ohio/Yellow Springs) in 264th place with a time of 29:54 and junior Manny Gonzalez (Chicago, Ill./St. Laurence) in 279th place at 30:10. "On the good side, the gap between our one to five runners has dropped to 50 seconds," stated SXU men's cross country coach Ed McAllister. "Now comes the bad side ... while we pack, that pack is too far back early in races, forcing us to play too serious a game of catch-up.' We finally are at full strength this weekend with the inclusion of co-captain Evan Lowry and Dan Hasty. We're running out of time ... this race is the one where I must see a breakout of this team. We face great competition from Huntington University (Ind.) and I look forward to solid improvements on all fronts." Saint Xavier travels to Huntington, Ind., this Saturday (October 4) to take part in the Huntington University Invitational. The meet kicks off at 10:15 a.m. central time.