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Taylor likes improvement in men's cross country performance

Saturday, September 15, 2012
by Mark McGee

NASHVILLE, Tenn. -Lipscomb cross country coach Bill Taylor sent his front line men’s runners into competition Saturday morning in the Commodore Invitational hosted by Vanderbilt at Percy Warner Park.

There were four races on the schedule. Lipscomb runners participated in three of them.

In the Men’s 8-K Gold Run the Bisons finished 16th of 24 teams. In the Men’s 8-K Black Run the Bisons placed seventh out of 15 teams. In the Women’s  6-K Gold Run the Lady Bisons, competing without their top 15 runners, finished 20th in a field of 24 teams.

"Overall the men improved over our last race,” Taylor said. “We've made progress, which is positive,”

In the Gold Run the Bisons were paced by a pair of freshmen _ Daniel Gardner in 53rd place with a time if 26:02.16 and Matthew Hall in 59th with a 26:07.37.

"Daniel Gardner tied the fastest ever time by a Lipscomb freshman on the Vaughn's Gap course, a place we race at least once every year,” Taylor said. “He and Matt Hall are going to be really good.

“They are just figuring this whole college and 8-K thing out.  Once they realize they can run and stay with the top runners in any race, big things are going to happen.”

Rounding out the field in the Gold Run were sophomore Ryan Gadsey (114, 27:02.66); freshman Austin Casassa (121, 27:06.98); sophomore Tate Honaker (122, 27:07.62); senior Ben Wright (123, 27:07.74); sophomore Tyler Glenn (147, 28:05.14).

Freshman Jared Wingerter placed 23rd for the Bisons in the Black Run with a time of 27:09.40. Sophomore Dan Coleman finished in the 38th spot with a time if 27:46.10 and freshman Mason Shepherd crossed the finish line in 41st place with a time of 27:52.40.

Also finishing the race for the Bisons were sophomore Zak Vruwink (57, 28:34.30); freshman Max McBride (97, 30:23.60); sophomore Ben Ashley (105, 30:42.30) and junior Philip Brasher (112, 31:47.60).

The top Lady Bisons finisher in the Women’s Gold Run was sophomore Renee Menzie in 106th place with a time of 23:50.34.

The rest of the Lady Bisons finishers were sophomore Lana Hojeij (142, 24:44.20); junior Katie Bunker (155, 25:05.58); junior Anna Belner (165, 25:26.80); and freshman Makenna Rickner (176, 26:04.29).

"I was happy with the effort of the five women we ran,” Taylor said. “They put it all out there.”

The Lady Bisons travel to Toledo, Ohio for the Inter-regional “Bubblebuster” Sept. 21.  The men will take the weekend off.

“It will be fun to see the whole women's team in action together next Friday though,” Taylor said.  “It was odd not having our top women racing at Vaughn's Gap today.

“They learned a lot from watching the race though.  Sometimes you learn by racing and sometimes you learn by observing."

Written by Mark McGee, Senior Publisher/Director of Media Relations for Athletics.