Photo by Kim Parent

By Grace Remington, For The Miami Student

On a course drenched with rain, the Miami University men’s and women’s cross country teams faced off against more than 40 schools in the All-Ohio Championships Friday.

Due to the threat of inclement weather, the open races and the championship races were combined for both the men’s and women’s meets. According to men’s head coach Warren Mandrell, this meant there were around 600 people on the course at once.

“Our guys were intelligent about that,” Mandrell said. “They did a good job of moving themselves up to the front and putting themselves in places where they wouldn’t get trapped.”

Senior Amanda Hancock thought the increased number of runners brought an extra challenge to the race.

“It was a little bit more difficult during the first mile when you’re trying to break out of the crowd and get your position, and throughout the race there were always people around me,” Hancock said.

Junior Joe Stewart carried the men’s squad, finishing first place overall with a time of 24:32, a personal best.

“He had a phenomenal race,” Mandrell said. “He was smart and patient. He didn’t take the lead until the fifth mile, and then he pulled away late in the race.”

Mandrell found it interesting that Stewart was named to the All-Ohio freshman team at this meet two years ago.

Senior Dan Garleb (25:46; 29th), sophomores Andrew Dusing (25:49.85; 37th), Patrick Santino (25:53.41; 41st), Vince Moeglin (26:03.44; 50th), and Stephen Biebelhausen (26:11.55; 64th), and juniors Ryan Moncrieff (25:53.97; 43rd) and Zack McBride (26:10.42; 60th) all scored for the RedHawks.

Dusing’s time was also a personal record.

“This was by far Andrew’s best performance, and he hasn’t even been running cross country that long,” Mandrell said.

In the Division I rankings, Miami took third. Mid-American Conference rivals Akron University and Ohio University placed first and second, respectively.

For the women, it was freshman Maria Scavuzzo who led the way. She finished first for Miami with a personal record time of 22:56 and an eighth-place spot overall.

“Maria was definitely on a mission,” Hancock said. “We’re proud of her.”

Sophomores Jackie Mullins (23:30.79; 24th) and McKenna Kiple (23:39.00; 29th), freshmen Alesha Vovk (23:56.04; 35th) and Sarah Starrett (24:04.42; 36th), Hancock (24:21.53; 42nd) and junior Julianne Ballog (24:31.61; 43rd) rounded out Miami’s scoring.

“Everyone wanted to do a little better, but overall we worked together really well and we each learned a lot from our races,” Hancock said. “We each walked away with something we can work on.”

The ‘Hawks finished fifth in the Division I category. MAC rival OU came in first, followed by Dayton University, Akron and Kent State University.

“Overall, it was a solid weekend,” Hancock said. “It was a good running atmosphere and a lot of fun. There was a mix of different people and skill level. It reminds you why you love the sport.”

Neither team will racing next week in order to prepare for Pre-Nationals in Terre Haute, Indiana Oct. 18.

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