MARQUETTE, Mich. - The Michigan Tech cross country teams competed at the Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference Championships Saturday Oct. 21 at Gentz's Homestead Golf Course in Marquette, hosted by Northern Michigan University. The Tech men's and women's team both clinched a third-place finish. Matt Pahl earned First Team All-Conference honors and Emily Byrd, Liz Bloch and Emily Vigil earned Second Team All-Conference honors.
"This was an unbelievable day for both of our teams," said Michigan Tech head coach Jake Isaacson. "I can't express the amount of pride and joy I have for the athletes after the races they had today."
In a field of 101 runners, 10 Tech men competed in the 8K competition. Leading in the GLIAC championship race for the Huskies was junior, Matt Pahl, who cracked the top 10. Pahl completed the course with a time of 22:18.5 and secured 10th place. Grant Brown and Nathan Carey joined Pahl in the Huskies top three. Senior, Brown hit the line in 24th place with a time of 26:40.0, followed by sophomore, Carey (25th, 26:43.6).
Braden Reichl (28th, 26:48.3), Robbie Watling (30th, 26:50.7), Brendan Klynstra (34th, 26:58.7), Zach Werth (39th, 27:06.6), Chase Scheel (41st, 27:17.2), Luke Moore (43rd, 27:20.4) and Robert Beggs (54th, 27:48.2) were among the other Tech men's athletes to finish the championship race.
"Our men had their best race of the year, and followed the race plan very well," Isaacson added. "When one guy started hurting they picked each up, and a top-3 team finish is a great reward for them."
Three Huskies women broke the top 20 in the 6K competition. Emily Byrd, finishing 14th in a field of 104 runners, hit the line at 22:54.6. Liz Bloch trailed immediately following, securing 15th place at 22:56.3. Emily Vigil was among the top three, locking down 19th place with a 23:01.8 finish time.
Katherine Schneider (30th, 24:03.8), Lucille Nunneley ( 32nd, 24:16.7), Robyn Holmes (33rd, 24:20.3), Julia Manzano (34th, 24:20.7), Madisyn Estkowski (47th, 24:54.5), Sarah Goble (55th, 25:06.8) and Cassie Gietek (64th, 25:42.4).
"Our women ran one of the toughest races I've ever seen," said Isaacson. "The amount of grit and toughness they displayed was incredible."
The men's team finished third place with 109 points and the women's team scored 101 points to claim the third place title. The Grand Valley State Lakers swept the 2017 Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (GLIAC) Men's and Women's Cross Country Championships for the 16th consecutive season.
The Huskies are set to host a fundraising event, "Trick or Trot", Saturday, Oct. 28 on the Tech Trails. Participants are encouraged to dress-up in costumes and may race individually or as a team. More details can be found here.
In the meantime, the Black and Gold will take some time to prepare for a competitive field at the NCAA Midwest Region Championships hosted by Cedarville University in Cedarville Ohio, Saturday, Nov. 4.