Charleston, Ill. - The stretch from December 11-13 was extremely busy for the Saint Xavier University indoor men's track team. The distance medley relay (DMR) team, consisting of sophomore Brandon Hummer
(Willowbrook, Ill./Hinsdale South), senior Chris Spencer
(Frankfort, Ill./Eastern Illinois/Lincoln-Way East), senior Manny Gonzalez (Chicago, Ill./St. Laurence) and sophomore Matt Rychel
(Tinley Park, Ill./Andrew), travelled to Charleston, Ill., to take part in the EIU Early Bird Meet at Eastern Illinois University. The Cougars finished in third place behind Indiana State University and Eastern Illinois University in the time of 10:33.59, narrowly missing the NAIA National qualifying standard of 10:33.50 by a mere .09 seconds.
Next, on Sunday, December 13, junior Roy Witty
(Mount Greenwood, Ill./Marist) finished 12th overall among 3,534 runners in the Dallas White Rock Half-Marathon in a time of 1:16.08 for the 13.1 mile course. Witty's performance in the half marathon Sunday qualified him for the NAIA Marathon in Marion, Ind., on May 24.
"Good weekend," said SXU men's track coach Ed McAllister
. "We only take those runners to an 'Early Bird' that I feel have a chance to qualify for Nationals. This relay team is our bellweather. We have only worked out a couple of weeks after cross country, so I feel good about the future. Rychel's relay leg (1600 meters) was one of the best runs that I have ever witnessed. Witty should be considered among the best marathon runners in the NAIA. His race places him well ahead of his training sequence from the past."