GVSU - Lakers Post Strong Outing at Spartan Invitational

GVSU - Lakers Post Strong Outing at Spartan Invitational

Provided by GVSU

Tanner Mickey - Athletic Communications Assistant

EAST LANSING, Mich. – Grand Valley State cross country kicked off the 2016 season with a promising start at the 2016 MSU Spartan Invitational Friday afternoon.

The Laker women entered Friday's competition putting their top spot in the NCAA Division II national rankings on the line, while the men held the second spot in the Division II rankings going into the event, trailing only Colorado Mines.

On the women's side, Grand Valley State was able to place 13 runners inside the top-100 and seven in the top-50 among a group of nearly 400 participants. GVSU was led by the 2015 USTFCCCA All-American, Kendra Foley was able to take first place overall in the 6k race with a time of 20:54. Foley edged out Michigan State's Rachele Schulist by a narrow margin, as Schulist also posted a time of 20:54. Following Foley for GVSU was 2015 GLIAC Women's Freshman of the Year and 2015 All-American, Gina Patterson. Patterson finished in 10th place with a time of 21:37.

Other GVSU runners placing in the top-50 for the women were Kelly Haubert, who finished in 23rd with a time of 22:18. Following shortly behind Haubert in 24th was Stacey Metzger, who posted a time of 22:20. The next Laker to finish was Theresa Mueller in 33rd place with a time of 22:41. Rounding out the top-50 for the Lakers were Brianna King (22:58) and Rachel Bendewald (22:58) in 41st and 42nd places, respectively.

Laker runners Alison Work (54th, 23:14), Allie Ludge (55th, 23:15), Amy Creutz (58th, 23:17), Abby Crouch (60th, 23:21), Kaylie Rhynard (65th, 23:24), and Jenna Klynstra (80th, 23:38) were all able to achieve top-100 spots among the group of nearly 400 runners.

For the Laker men, Friday was a successful day for the second-ranked team in the nation as 12 men placed in the top 50 and nine achieved 30th or higher. Zach Panning, the 2015 GLIAC Men's Freshman of the Year and 2015 All-American took first in today's 10k race by a margin of 16 seconds, posting a time of 24:43. 2015 All-Region honoree Chris May followed Panning, putting up a time of 24:59 and finishing second. Another 2015 All-Region honoree Wuoi Mach placed ninth in Friday's race and put up a time of 25:11.

Finishing right outside the top-10 for the Lakers were seniors Nate Orndorf and Bryce Bradley. The Laker runners finished with times of 25:12 and 25:16, respectively. Kevin Black rounded out the top-20 for GVSU with a 17th place finish and a time of 25:29.

Junior Trevor Sharnas came in at 25:34, which was good for a 24th place finish. Ethan Davenport would follow just a second after Sharnas (25:35), but placed 27th. Alberto Gomez would grab the 30th finishing spot with a time of 25:38 in Friday's race. Finishing up the top-50 for the Lakers were Mason VanDyke (37th, 25:50), Sam Butler (46th, 25:58), and Mitch Wilkins (47th, 26:01).

Other top-100 finishers for the Lakers in Friday's 10k race were Joe Renner (60th, 26:11), Jacob Domagalski (64th, 26:11), Leif McFrederick (75th, 26:18), Josh Steible (79th, 26:20), Michael Matusiak (85th, 26:23), and Joe Cecil (96th, 26:33).

Grand Valley State's next event will take place just over two weeks when the Lakers head to Louisville, Ky. on Oct. 1 to run in the Greater Louisville Classic, hosted by the University of Louisville at 9 am.