Cross Country

Rambler Recap: Men’s and Women’s Cross Country Teams Tuning Up for Missouri Valley Conference Championships

Steve WoltmannJunior Emma Hatch in a race


Last week’s results: In the final regular-season meet of the season, the Loyola men’s and women’s cross country teams headed to Peoria, Illinois, for the Bradley Classic. The men’s team finished 13th out of 27 teams, and the women finished 17th out of 31 teams.

How the men ran: In the 8K red race, which counted for the team scores, the men placed 13th, as senior Jake Brown returned to the team after missing the Notre Dame Invitational due to illness.

Brown provided the spark for the Ramblers, leading the team with a time of 24:52.1 to finish in 14th place overall. Redshirt junior Alex Baker came in close behind, clocking a 25:00.3 to place 22nd. Senior Chandler Diffee (76th; 25:46.0), first-year Derek Rink (116th; 26:18.1) and junior Peter Schaible (131st; 26:28.3) rounded out the scoring for Loyola.

In the 8K white race, which just counted for individual times, redshirt senior Jake Mazanke led the way, earning 12th place with a time of 26:40.7. Junior Kyle Whitney was next, placing 23rd with a time of 27:03.7. First-year Max O’Meara and senior Nicholas Prajka came in with a photo finish, with O’Meara claiming 41st with a time of 27:23.1 and Prajka earning 42nd, 0.1 seconds behind O’Meara at 27:23.2.

In a press release on the Loyola athletics website, assistant coach Mircea Bogdan said he thinks Brown, Baker and Mazanke all ran well and that the team is in a good place heading into the Missouri Valley Conference (MVC) Championships.

“We hope that — with a few adjustments in the next two weeks — we’ll be ready to put together a really great race for the MVC Championships,” said Bogdan.

How the women ran: In the 8K red race, the women placed 17th as junior Emma Hatch led the Ramblers for the third consecutive meet.

Hatch posted a time of 21:42.5, earning 32nd place overall. Junior Cassie Bloch placed 78th, with a time of 22:19.2, and fellow junior Julia Demko came in close behind in 79th, clocking a time of 22:19.7. First-year Rita Maurais placed 103rd with a 22:32.6, she has secured a scoring spot in all of the Ramblers’ five meets this season. Sophomore Erin Falsey rounded out the scoring with a 142nd place time of 23:02.8

In the 6K white race, senior Mia Wrey cracked the top 10, logging a 23:15.0 to earn 9th place. Senior Kelly Janokowicz finished 25th, with a time of 23:47.8, and first-year Erin Laird came in close behind, in 26th place, with a time of 23:51.1

In the press release, assistant coach Maraya Slatter said she was happy with what she saw in the runners.

“It was good to walk away with a few new personal bests but there are still improvements that can be made. We’ll continue to push forward as we look towards the MVC and NCAA regional meets.”

What’s next: The Ramblers will take next week off to prepare for the Missouri Valley Conference Cross Country Championships on Oct. 29 at Northern Iowa.

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