Men's XC hopes get off on the righ foot
Published: Thursday, September 12, 2013
Updated: Thursday, September 12, 2013 22:09
The UConn men’s cross country team will open the season at 11:30 Saturday morning at the UMass Invitational meet in Amherst, Mass.
This meet is the annual matchup between multiple New England universities including Vermont, Maine, Amherst College, Boston College, Providence College, as well as UConn and host UMass.
This year’s Husky squad will look to get off on the right foot this weekend against some familiar, yet difficult competition.
Head coach Greg Roy, entering his 29th season at the helm of the cross country team, will lead a young group of athletes this year. This year’s group lacks a single senior, and 12 of the 14 Huskies are freshmen or sophomores.
UConn only has three returnees from last year’s team, sophomores James Agati and Alvaro Chavez, and junior Stephen Vento. Coach Roy will need some of his younger members to step up and emerge as team leaders this season.
Perhaps the biggest hurdle coming into the year is the loss of the team’s top runner from last year, Ryan McGuire, who paced the Huskies in all six events the team competed in a season ago.
McGuire was the lone Husky to qualify for the Northeast regional meet last season and had a chance to head to Louisville, Ky to represent UConn in the NCAA championships, however he was unable to do so.
It will be difficult for this year’s team to duplicate the recent success coach Roy and his runners have had with such a young and inexperienced group. This weekend’s meet at UMass will provide some insight as to how well this group will perform for the remainder of the season.
Coach Roy will look to this meet as a stepping stone for further success, and it should provide valuable experience for the majority of young runners on this year’s team.