GREENSBORO, N.C. – Bridgewater College captured both men’s and women’s cross country races Friday evening in the 2014 Guilford College Invitational/Old Dominion Athletic Conference (ODAC) Preview Meet. The teams ran Guilford’s Meadows Course on the north side of campus under warm and cloudy conditions.
The Eagles’ men placed five runners among the top seven individuals to win the nine-team race. Bridgewater head coach Brian Flynn, running unattached, won the individual eight-kilometer race in 26 minutes, 24.00 seconds, nearly four minutes ahead of former Guilford standout Andris Goncarovs ’15, who also ran unattached. Roanoke College’s Harrison Toney was the first collegiate runner across the finish line in 28:37.30 and helped the Maroons place second. Eastern Mennonite University’s Ryan Gehman placed second in the 101-runner field in 29:05.40, which lifted the Royals into fourth place.
Bridgewater’s men entered the meet ranked 33rd in the United State Track & Field/Cross Country Coaches’ Association’s (USTFCCCA) NCAA Division III Preseason National Rankings and first in the group’s South/Southeast Region Preseason Poll. All five Eagles’ scorers finished within four-tenths of a second of each other. Wyatt Campbell’s fifth-place time of 29:19.20 led the way. He edged teammate Aaron Hill (29:19.30) by one-tenth of a second, followed by Keith Thomas (29:19.40), Trey Gibson (29:19.50) and Matt Denlinger (29:19.60).
Meet host Guilford College placed eighth in the field with 234 points. Sophomore Nick Reynolds paced the Quakers with a 25th-place time of 29:57.80.
Bridgewater’s women, ranked second in the USTFCCCA’s NCAA Division III South/Southeast Region Preseason Poll, placed five harriers among the top-eight finishers. The Eagles tallied 30 points, well in front of second-place Roanoke College in the seven-team field. Eastern Mennonite’s Katie Lehman completed the six-kilometer course in 25:17.80, nearly 12 seconds ahead of Roanoke’s Kerri Dalton (25:29.40), and helped the Royals finish third. Virginia Wesleyan College’s Liz Wade claimed third place in the 64-woman field with a time of 25:37.10. The Marlins finished fourth.
Bridgewater’s top women finished less than a second apart. Fourth-place finisher Scarlett Bavin showed the way in 26:22.40, a half stride in front of teammate Lauren Johnson (26:22.60). Zanny Ludtke (26:22.80), Kaylee Kubisiak (26:23.00) and Makenzie McDonald (26:23.10) rounded out the Eagles’ scorers.
Guilford’s women’s finished fifth with 131 points. Rookie Sommer Fanney (Burlington, N.C./Williams) had the Quakers’ top effort with a time of 26:49.60, which placed 16th. Sophomore teammate Rebecca Reyna (Liberty, N.C./Southern Alamance) was 18th in 27:06.30.
Guilford’s teams return to action Sept. 6 in the Royals Twilight Meet, hosted by Queens University of Charlotte.