RIVER FALLS, Wis. (Blugolds.com) - The UW-Eau Claire men's cross country team was five points away from capturing its first WIAC cross country title since its only one in 1980. The Blugolds finished second for the second consecutive year to UW-La Crosse, scoring 58 points to the Eagles' 53 at Kilkarney Hills Golf Course, hosted by UW-River Falls.
The Blugolds' improved their point total significantly over last year, however, as they totaled 89 while La Crosse won with 30 in 2012. The last time the Blugolds finished in second place prior to last year was 1989.
Ryan Mugan (So.-Howards Grove, Wis.) and Matt Scott (Sr.-Kiel, Wis.) snagged first-team all-conference honors for the Blugolds with fifth and seventh-place finishes, respectively. Mugan ran to a time of 24:47 while Scott ran 24:51 over the duration of 8,000-meters.
Paul Hetke (Sr.-Chetek, Wis.) rounded out the scoring lineup by getting honorable mention honors in 19th place with a time of 25:20.
At the conclusion of the championship, Jeffrey Quednow (Sr.-Rib Lake, Wis.) was named to the All-Sportsmanship team, which was selected for individuals that displayed exemplary sportsmanship throughout the season. It included one member from each school.
After some of the team will compete at the JV Cup at Luther College (Iowa) next Friday, the rest of the team will shift its attention to the regional qualifying meet in attempt to qualify for the national meet for a second consecutive year. Regionals will take place Nov. 16 in Rock Island, Ill.