Cross Country begins season in Toledo

Jamar Dunson and Jamar Dunson

The first Friday of the school year will feature BGSU men’s and women’s cross country teams headed to the Toledo Invitational meet.

This meet will be hosted by the Rockets and features them as well as the Eastern Michigan Eagles. The men’s race begins at 5:45 p.m., and the women’s start at 6:15 p.m.

The Falcons already have more positives to look up to, even before the first meet begins. In a recent poll done by the United States Track and Field Cross Country Coaches Association [USTFCCCA], the women’s team is ranked 15th in the Great Lakes preseason poll. Bowling Green is one out of five Mid-American Conference schools to be ranked, along with Toledo [no. 5], Miami [no. 9], Central Michigan [no. 10] and Eastern Michigan [no. 13].

This is the team’s first regional ranking under fourth-year head coach Lou Snelling.

The women’s side returns with all runners from last season’s NCAA Regional meet and is headed by redshirt juniors Andrea Alt and Jasmine Redman. According to cross country head coach Lou Snelling, redshirt Mackenzie McMillin has been steadily improving through the season and is poised to have a breakout season this year.

The men’s cross country team is also returning with their runners from the Regional with senior Greg Black and junior Jeremy Richard.

Last season, Black missed only one of the seven meets that the team had; when he did compete, he finished 97 out of 207 total runners.

Heading into the meet, Snelling says the team’s main focus is to get back to the basics and readjust to the competition that

awaits them.

“We’re looking for the basics,” Snelling said. “To have the mechanics down and be conditioned and pacing ourselves in terms of competition.”

Snelling also said that the practices were going well for both the men’s and women’s sides in that he’s seeing an increase in the fitness level of the players.

The Falcons’ goals this season are to improve in the rankings and bring home some individual awards.

“We always want to continue to see improvement,” said Snelling. “We also want to see the team reach the MAC championship and get some individual hardware as well.”

The Toledo Invitational will be taking place at Pearson Park in Oregon, Ohio starting with the men’s 5,000 meter.