Bourbonnais, Ill. – Led by a sixth-place overall finish by senior Matt Rychel (Tinley Park, Ill./Andrew), the Saint Xavier University men's cross country team finished third in a nine-team field at the Midwest Classic hosted by Olivet Nazarene University last Friday evening in Bourbonnais, Ill. The Cougars finished behind host Olivet Nazarene and Trinity Christian College, respectively. Rychel posted a time of 26:29 over the 8K (8,000 meters) course in a field of 91 runners. He was followed by sophomore Chris Shellenberger (Crown Point, Ind./Crown Point) finishing 14th overall in the time of 27:10.
Other top finishers for Saint Xavier included: junior Ricky Olmedo (Blue Island, Ill./Calumet College/Eisenhower) in 18thplace at 27:24, sophomore Shane Kenney (Porter, Ind./Chesterton) in 22ndplace with a time of 27:39 and freshman Kyle Counter (New Lenox, Ill./Lincoln-Way Central) at No. 23 in 27:40. The final scorers for the Cougars were sophomore Chris Sarna (Palos Park, Ill./Stagg) in 25thplace with 27:46 and senior Brandon Hummer (Willowbrook, Ill./Hinsdale South) in 28thplace with a time of 27:56. Sophomore Brian Corcoran (Chicago, Ill./Brother Rice), SXU's top finisher from last week's opening meet, missed the Midwest Classic with an injury.
"I had a level of satisfaction," said SXU men's cross country coach Ed McAllister. "Shellenberger and Rychel ran well. Counter had a solid first race at the collegiate distance and we had a tight group. Corcoran (Brian) was held out of this race, due to injuries, and I feel that we are making regular progress weekly."
Saint Xavier next competes at the Illinois Intercollegiate Championships hosted by Illinois State University on Friday, September 16. The men's race is scheduled to take place at 5:30 p.m. in Normal, Ill.