SALISBURY, N.C. - On Saturday the Men's and Women's cross country teams traveled to the Fleet Feet Invitational to compete against D2 and D3 teams.
The men raced first against nine other teams in the 8K, and early on they looked great.
"We talked extensively about how to race today, and what we wanted out of today's performance," said Coach Leonard. "Each individual had something they needed to do to make their performance better. "
The top 5 runners finished in a pack, with a time of 43 seconds between the 1st and 5th runner. "The goal for today was under 60 seconds, so this was great to see that they achieved that," said Leonard.
Sophomore Connor Hayes was the top finisher for the Bishops with a time of 28:39 for 19th place, followed by freshman Enock Ruto with a time of 28:52 and 21st place, junior Christian Tippette in 29:10 for 22nd place, freshman Philly Barungi in 29:19 for 25th place, and junior Andrew Bowen in 29:22 for 26th place.
The team had other runners close behind such as sophomore Terenthen Parker in 34th place in 30:53, sophomore Keyonte Williams in 36th place by running a new personal best of 31:06, sophomore Maleik Small in 37th place (31:28), freshman Menwuyelet Tekelemariam in 42nd place in 32:35, sophomore Jeshon Smith in 46th place (33:03), junior Tyler Bird in 48th place (Personal best of 33:10), and wrapping up with freshman Yisrael Yisrael with a personal best of 37:51.
The men went on to finish in third place (out of 10 teams) behind 2 very talented D2 teams (Wingate & Catawba), while beating 2 conference opponents in Pfeiffer and Averett along with three D2 teams.
"We are progressively getting better like we want to do," said Coach Leonard. "Every meet we need to continue to improve on a variety of areas, and hope to run our peak times at the end of the season."
The Wesleyan cross country teams are back in action in two weeks when they return home to host their first ever home meet: the USA South Preview tournament on the NCWC campus on Sept. 21. The races get underway at 9:00 AM.