Rock Island, Ill. – On Friday, September 27, the Saint Xavier University men's cross country team took part in the Brissman-Lundeen Invitational hosted by Augustana University in Rock Island, Ill., for the first time since the 2009 season. The Cougars finished in sixth place among the 31 collegiate varsity squads in attendance. Once again leading the way was senior Brian Corcoran (Chicago, Ill./Brother Rice), who finished in 14th place among the 491 runners competing. Corcoran ran the 8K (4.97 mi.) course in a time of 25:38.
Following Corcoran for the Cougars were senior Brian Meyer (Bloomington, Ill./Ashford University/Bloomington) in 32nd place at 26:13 followed by sophomore Eric Hancock (Mishawaka, Ind./Mishawaka) in 41st place with a time of 26:21. Next across for SXU was the grouping of senior Chris Sarna (Palos Hills, Ill./Stagg) at 26:34 (64th place), senior Chris Shellenberger (Crown Point, Ind./Crown Point) in 26:51 (79th place) and junior Kyle Counter (Manhattan, Ill./Lincoln-Way Central) in 82nd place at 26:53. Rounding out the Cougars line-up was senior Shane Kenney (Porter, Ind./Chesterton) in 94th place at 27:07 and freshman Abel Hernandez (Alsip, Ill./Shepard) in 119th place with a time of 27:22.
"I felt that it was a satisfactory meet," said Saint Xavier University men's cross country coach Ed McAllister. "While we did not run quite the times that we had hoped, there were some very solid signs that this team is just about ready to achieve their peak performances in the near future. Corcoran ran solidly and I was very happy with the performance of Brian Meyer. He is quite the competitor. Finally, Eric Hancock ran his best race of the year thus far. Overall, the team ran a strong second half of the race, which I had felt was one of our weaknesses in the past. I feel that our next couple of races will show exactly how much this team has improved."
Saint Xavier is off this week and travels to Lawrence, Kan., on Saturday, October 12, to run at the NAIA Pre-Nationals Invitational held at Rim Rock Farm against many of the nationally-ranked squads in the nation. The men's race is scheduled for a 1:30 p.m. start.