Sept. 15, 2012
Men's Photos |
Women's Results | Men's Results
Columbia, Mo.-The Mizzou men and women took advantage of a beautiful day with a strong SEC debut meet at the Iowa State Invitational.
"We were very relaxed, very focused going into the race," Cross Country Head Coach Joe Lynn said. "It was really nice to see the girls really follow through with the race plan, it's a great starting point for the rest of the season."
The women's 5k started the day at 10:00 a.m. with the Tigers finishing in second behind Iowa State, 24-35. Senior Bailey Belvis was first across the line, keeping pace with the lead pack for the majority of the race before breaking away for the win.
"Bailey executed what we talked about perfectly," Coach Lynn said. "It was really nice to see her do that and it's going to give her a lot of confidence in her fitness moving forward."
"Personally, it was a really exciting race and kind of an unexpected blessing," Belvis said. "As a team, I've never been this excited about a group of girls. We were all able to unite on the course and see the training come together for us."
Sophomores Maria Effinger and Courtney Wood were the next two for the black and gold, coming in 8th and 9th respectively.
"I was really happy with my race, and it was nice because we were able to run as a pack for most of it," Effinger said. "Courntey and I were able to help each other out and really work off each other."
Rounding out the top five were two more sophomores, Ali Ross and Courtney Brown. The pair came in 15th and 16th overall, working together throughout the race.
"This was a good meet to come back on," Wood said. "It was a good course, the weather was perfect, and we got to run as a team and accomplish what we needed to."
The men's race followed at 10:30 a.m., and the Mizzou men took charge from the gun.
"I thought we did a real good job keeping everyone together and staying under control," said senior Max Storms, who led the Tigers in with a third place finish overall. "I'm pretty happy about it, but whether it was 3rd or 30th, place didn't matter. It was just about keeping together as a pack."
The lead pack of Storms, Bryant Blahnik (sophomore), Tyler Schneider (freshman), Merid Seleshi (junior), Hayden Legg (junior), and Evan Chiplock (freshman) took command of the race early, and maintained to earn six out of the top ten finishes.
"Individually I was pretty nervous going in, but once the race started and we packed up as a team I was focused and wanted to do whatever I could to help the team get the win," Schneider, who came in 6th overall, said. "We showed just a glimpse of our potential and now we know what we need to work on to be the best we can be in November, which is where our focus is really at."
The men finished on top, beating Iowa State 25-35.
"I feel great about how things went with myself and the team today," Blahnik, who finished 5th overall, said. "It's a big improvement from this time last year."
"Iowa State is a really great team on both sides, and I thought we looked like we belonged there today," Coach Lynn said. "I'm really excited to get back to training tomorrow and keep getting better each week moving forward."
The Tigers will be back on the course on September 29 at the Louisville Classic in Kentucky. This will be a big meet for both teams as they go up against some of the top teams in the country. Check back here for more updates on both squads, and follow the team on Twitter @MIZ_TrackField.