By Alanna Huggett, UWEC Sports Information
COLFAX, Wis. (Blugolds.com) – The University of Wisconsin – Eau Claire men's cross country team raced at their home meet, the Blugold Invitational, on Friday October 4. The Blugolds raced at Whitetail Golf Course against a large field on Friday; 29 teams competed at the meet. The men placed fourth overall, scoring 138 points. St. Olaf won the meet with 88 points.
Despite rainy weather earlier in the week, the weather held off and racing conditions were ideal for the Blugolds. The course itself held up against the poor weather.
"Whitetail Golf Course always does a good job of getting the course ready for us. I was a little worried how the course would be, but it was great," said Head Coach Dan Schwamberger.
Connor Dolan (Jr – Nekoosa, WI/Assumption) led the Blugolds, finishing fifth with a time of 25: 15.3. Following Dolan was teammate Brett Haffner (So. – Darien, IL/Hinsdale South). Haffner placed 27th, running a time of 25:44.9.
The next Blugolds to cross the finishing line were Alex Winn (Sr. – Kingston, WA) and Jake Petri (So. – Muskego, WI). Winn finished 31st with a time of 25:48.8. Petri finished just behind Winn, placing 32nd with a time of 25:49.
Winn, who is a senior and captain on the team, said he was proud of how he raced at Blugold.
"Personally, it was an emotional race. This was my final time setting foot on the course as a team member of the Blugolds. The emotions set in during the race and pushed me into the finish line where I almost fell into tears. But seeing all of my teammates do so well, I smiled and congratulated them instead," said Winn.
Winn also commented on the team's success.
"Many people on the team had amazing races followed by PR's across the board. What I think contributed to this was committing to the pack and working in mostly twos and threes," said Winn.
Tyler Osen (Fr. – Lakeville, MN/Lakeville North) rounded out the top five for the Blugolds. Osen placed 45th and ran a 26:02.5. Bailey Wilson (Sr. – New Richmond, WI) was runner number six for the men's team. Wilson placed 50th with a time of 26:06.2.
Head Coach Dan Schwamberger commented on how Friday's race was one of the biggest fields the Blugold Invitational has ever had. Schwamberger said he was pleased with how the men's team raced.
"Compared to two weeks ago, everyone's made a nice progression, so I think we're where we need to be right now," said Schwamberger.
The Blugolds will be back in action in two weeks, racing on Saturday, October 19 at the UW – Oshkosh Invite held at Lake Breeze Golf Course.