/Men’s cross country races into its second straight top-two finish

Men’s cross country races into its second straight top-two finish

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Scott Shelton

Contributor

The Troy men’s cross country team finished second while the women placed sixth at the Mountain to Sea Duals hosted by Appalachian State University in Boone, North Carolina.

Of the nine men’s teams, the Trojans finished second only to the University of North Carolina, the only Power 5 school in the competition. The women had a tougher day, but did manage to finish ahead of Georgia State, one of three other Sun Belt teams in the women’s race.

The men’s team beat Appalachian State, the defending champion of both the men’s and women’s events at the Mountain to Sea Duals in 2016.

Bradley Dixon led the way for the men’s team with a time of 25:59.4, which was good enough to place 12th out of 88 total runners in the 8k.

Behind Dixon, four Trojan runners — Daniel Glick, Bracklin Stewart, Sawyer Sprung and Brennan Garriques — finished 15th through 18th, contributing to the team’s high-average finish.

Delaney Moore and Ryan DeGale finished 44th and 51st, respectively, rounding out the seven runners for the Trojans.

The women’s team ran a 5K, and the top finisher was Christie Caruana, who finished 20th out of 94 runners with a time of 18:35.3.

Just behind Caruana was another Troy runner, Mackenzie Walsh, who finished 21st overall with a time of 18:36.2.

In the men’s race, North Carolina had five runners finish in the top 10, and it had four top-10 runners in the women’s race, leading to the Tar Heels taking the top spot in both the 8K and the 5K.

The winner of the men’s 8K was Coastal Carolina’s Nadeel Wildschutt, but Troy had a better average finish, so the Trojans finished the best out of the three Sun Belt teams competing.

Saturday’s meet was the third one scheduled of six meets this 2017 season. The next meet for Troy is Sept. 23 at the University of Florida in Gainesville.

The Trojans will return to Appalachian State on Oct. 28 for the Sun Belt Championship before heading to Tuscaloosa for the NCAA South Regionals in November.