Men’s XC travel to Michigan State for meet

Category:  Sports
Wednesday, September 21st, 2016 at 10:53 PM
Men’s XC travel to Michigan State for meet by Mike Lantinen

The Edinboro cross country team came into this season facing wholesale change, to say the least. With the loss of their top runner and departure of their coach, Boro came into the year with some holes to fill. On Friday, the Scots made the trip to Michigan State, proving their coaches poll ranking was no fluke and made their case for further success down the road.

“[The] strategy going into the race [was to] focus on pack running, finding each other in the race [and] working together and using each other to
get through the hardship of racing,” said senior Jon Gusew.

Bryan Geehrer continued his stellar freshman season, placing 19th in a blistering 25:53. He was the fifth freshman to cross the line in team competition. Up against some of the top ranked schools in the country, his form remained strong as he averaged a 5:05 pace.

“Bryan obviously had a great race; he got out quick and got pulled along in that front pack,” Gusew said.

Following closely behind would be two-time 800-meter PSAC champion Corey Wefing. Coming through in 28th place, Wefing made up for lost ground throughout the race as he picked up points for the Scots.

“To move up that many spots in a shorter race is hard when the race is so dense,” Gusew added.

Running mostly as a duo throughout the 8,000-meter race, Musselman High alum Jared Hallow and Gusew refused to let either teammate make a move as they finished one-tenth of a second apart, for 42nd and 43rd respectively.

Gusew stated, “Jared and I were able to work together throughout most of the race. [We were] pulling off each other and using each other as motivation.” 

Rounding out the scoring five for Edinboro in his official return to competitive racing was Gene Baritot, formerly of Duquesne University. Baritot finished in 27:35, ten spots behind Gusew.

Baritot transfered out of Edinboro his freshman season following the announcement of coach Doug Watts’ retirement. After his stint at Duquesne and a semester off, he has officially made a return.

“The big focus is on the team, building a new atmosphere and developing some sort of tradition that recruits and incoming athletes can look at and want to be a part of,” Gusew continued, “He’s not afraid to call us out... there’s a dialogue between the team and him [Coach Foster] about what we think we need to do and what he thinks we need to do and what kind of workouts will put us in the best position to succeed at the end of the season.”

Rounding out the top seven for the Scots were Daniel Nowak and Steven Scheetz, running 27:32 and 27:34 respectively.

“Many of us weren’t happy with our results, but we still placed well as a team. That was a big sign coming out of the race that the pieces are there, and we just have to put them together better,” Gusew said. 

Michael Lantinen is a sports editor for The Spectator. He can be reached at sports.spectator@gmail.com.

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