The University of Dallas Cross Country team raced this weekend in Boston’s 47th annual Codfish Bowl. The athletes reaped the benefits of both the cooler weather and new competition as they ventured far outside of the comfortable but considerably warmer Texas climate.
For the women’s team, freshman Bridget Kennedy finished the 5K race with a time of 20:00. This was Kennedy’s second great performance in a row — she also finished first last weekend for the UD women’s team.
Though this young athlete has continued to perform well, her older teammates have not been left in the dust. Seniors Ruth Fritz and Emma Polefko helped lead the Crusaders as they finished with times of 21:21 and 21:36, respectively. The experience of these women should not be overlooked. Both Fritz and Polefko have been part of the women’s cross country team for three seasons and plan to make this season their best thus far.
The men competed in their first 8K of the season and placed third out of seven teams in the competition. Senior Ryan McAnany, who was named Southern Collegiate Athletic Conference (SCAC) Player of the Week last week, led the men’s team, crossing the finish line with a time of 27:53. McAnany did not seem too worried about defending his recent honor.
“I wasn’t really thinking about it much, honestly,” said McAnany. “I was just excited to race my first 8K this year, and travel to a cool place and race on a good course. It’s definitely nice to get away from the Texas heat.”
On the other end of the class spectrum was freshman Rafael Medina, who competed in his first collegiate 8K. Though Medina was not incredibly thrilled with his own performance this weekend, he appreciated the presence of his teammates.
“The team is really motivating [me] and having guys to chase after helps me stay focused and work harder,” said Medina. “I’m still learning new things to perfect my own running from watching them and trying to be as fast as they are.”
Both teams use their experienced upperclassmen as well as new freshmen as they work together and push forward into the season.
The men and women will both be competing next week in Marshall, Texas for the Texas Division III Championship.