The Rock men’s cross country team was in action last weekend at the Marty Uher Invitational hosted by California University of Pennsylvania; the team won easily with a large lead over the rest of the field.
Slippery Rock finished with 15 points, distantly followed by Wheeling Jesuit (54 points), California (Pa.) (79 points), and Penn State-Fayette (97 points).
The team was led by senior Jeremy Parsons who cruised to an overall victory, covering the 8-kilometer course in 28:03.2, over a minute ahead of the runner up. Slippery Rock also took places 3-7 with sophomores Jared Nelson and Daniel Janyska taking third and fourth respectively in times of 29:46.3 and 30:22.8. Junior Josh Rader rounded out the top 5 finishing with a time of 30:35.3 with fellow junior Andrew Maxwell right behind him in 30:40.8 to take sixth. Senior Jeff Henderson was the last Rock runner in the top 10, finishing seventh in 30:58.6. The Rock also had two freshmen competing in their first collegiate cross country race, Jon Snyder took 16th place with a time of 32:12.3, and Tanner Schlater finished 23rd with a time of 33:09.0.
The California (Pa.) cross country course will be home to the Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference (PSAC) cross country championships later this fall. Coach John Papa looked at this first meet as a good practice meet to get a good look at the championship course.
“I liked the way the team worked together for most of the race…it was good to see our runners pushing each other.” Papa said.
Papa also mentioned that he thinks that they will be able to get a better look at the better teams in the conference as the season progresses. Also from the meet at California (Pa.), Jeremy Parsons was named PSAC male cross country athlete of the week because of his dominating performance.
The Rock will have this weekend off from races and return to competition September 16 at the DII/DII Challenge at Kutztown University.