Eagles' Runners Complete First Invitational of the Year
FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. – The Florida Gulf Coast University cross country teams competed in their first meet at the inaugural Nova Southeastern Sharks Invitational today. The Eagles joined three Division I teams, including the University of Miami, and schools from the Sunshine State Conference in the 5K race.
The two FGCU squads, which are made up mostly of freshmen and sophomores, did not finish in the top three but showed signs of a team with a lot of potential. The men finished in fourth place behind Miami, Florida International and host, Nova Southeastern University. They defeated Florida Tech for the first time in the short FGCU athletic history with an average 5K time of 18:13.72. Junior Mike Harney (North Fort Myers, Fla.) finished a team best tenth overall with a time of 17:19.87 which is good for third all-time on the Eagles record book. In his first collegiate invitational, freshman Kyle Brunette (Venice, Fla.) finished 18th with a time of 17:53.43. Six other runners finished in the Top 50 for the Eagles.
FGCU’s women’s cross country team finished fifth, once again behind the Division I schools and Nova Southeastern. The Eagles had an average of 22:36.69 as they finished ahead of Palm Beach Atlantic and Florida Tech. Freshmen Abbie Zaspel (Burlington, Wisconsin) and Casey Hasten (Fort Myers, Fla.) both finished in the Top 20. Junior runner, Cadie Sly (Loxahatchee, Fla.) crossed the finish line in 23rd place with a time of 22:21.00. The other five Eagles’ runners also finished among the Top 50 runners in this morning’s event.
The Sharks Invitational marks the first of six regular season meets for FGCU’s cross country teams. The Eagles’ runners will return to action on Saturday, September 9th as they travel to Melbourne, Fla. for the Florida Tech Invitational. The men’s race will begin at 8:00 am with the women following at 8:45.
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