Cross Country Opens Season at Mark Covert Classic
The LMU men's and women's cross country teams will open up the season at the Mark Covert Classic for the fourth straight year.
LOS ANGELES – The LMU men's and women's cross country teams are set to open their 2016 slate as they head to the Mark Covert Classic, hosted by Cal State Fullerton, on Saturday. Racing begins at 8:30 a.m. with the men's 8K, followed by the women's 5K at 9:15 a.m. at Carbon Canyon Regional Park.
A Season Ago
For the second time in three years, the men’s team took home the Mark Covert Classic title, while the women took second, ending a four-year run at claiming the top spot.
Junior Jack Polerecky and senior Kayla de Bondt each picked up individual titles. Polerecky pulled away from the pack in the home stretch to finish at 25:13.15, while de Bondt claimed the Lions fourth straight individual title on the women’s side with a time of 17:48.79.
“The men got their opportunity to shine last year because they women had won it a number of years in a row,” recalled head coach Scott Guerrero. “We came up against a much improved San Diego State team. We won’t be necessary running all of our best team at this meet so this will give some of the younger kids a chance to shine and see where they are.”
|Date | Time:||Saturday, Sept. 3|
|Where:||Carbon Canyon Regional Park|
|LMUt:||ROSTER | SCHEDULE|
|Course Info:||Mark Covert Classic|
In the Ranks
The women's team earned the No. 15 spot in the west region of the USTFCCCA NCAA Division I Regional Cross Country Preason Rankings. LMU was one of six California squads in the west region to earn a preseason rank.
With the 2016 season fast approaching, Guerrero will see what seven newcomers have to offer in their Lion debut. Marcus Avila, Jacob Heink and Matthew Stein will look to bolster the men’s squad, while Johana Apelryd, Kyla Danforth, Megan Reilly and Hannah Wohlenberg are set to make an impact on the women’s side.
“What I’m really excited to see are these new folks,” said Guerrero. “We have a transfer from Seattle in Kayla Danforth who I recruited out of high school. Megan Riley was a national champion in the steeplechase in New York and was the state champion as well. Hannah Wohlenberg is a sub-11 girl from Northern California, On the men’s side, we have a freshman from Germany in Jacob. I’m excited to see what they can do.”
At the Helm
Guerrero enters his 19th season as head coach of the Lions. Over the past 18 years he has built the program from the bottom up, taking it from being virtually unknown to a distance force in the West Coast Conference and an rising program in the western region.
“The goal is to win of course,” stated Guerrero. “The guys are the defending champions and they know that. That’s going to be the goal, but the reality of it is we just want to go out and run the best race that we’re capable of running that we are today. We’ll use this as an opportunity to see where we really stack up. “
LMU will have a weekend off before traveling to San Diego for the WCC Preview Sept. 17.
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