Cross Country



In For The Long Haul

Don't let his quiet demeanor fool you. Longtime Notre Dame coach Tim Connelly has made a lasting impact on the women's cross country and track distance runners over the past quarter-century.

AS A SOPHOMORE: Emerged as one of the premier distance runners in the nation ... finished as Notre Dame's top runner in four of five cross country meets in which he participated ... made his 2004 cross country debut in the Notre Dame Invitational, finishing second in 23:43 ... took eighth at the NCAA Pre-National meet (24:07) before contributing to the team's BIG EAST title at the league cross country championships ... ran in a pack of four Irish runners at the meet, finishing second on the team and seventh overall in 23:54 to earn all-BIG EAST honors ... ran to an outstanding third-place finish at the NCAA Great Lakes Regional, completing the 10,000 meter course in 30:17 ... competed aggressively at the NCAA Championships, eventually finishing 42nd as Notre Dame's top runner ... named the men's cross country Notre Dame Monogram Club MVP ... had one of the better indoor track seasons in school history ... ran the 3,000 meters at the Notre Dame Invitational ... won the race convincingly in a time of 7:59.39, the fifth-fastest performance in school history ... competed in the prestigious Meyo Mile at the Meyo Invitational, finishing fourth and breaking four minutes with a 3:58.75 effort ... was the first Irish runner to break four minutes in the mile since Notre Dame distance legend Luke Watson managed the feat in 2003 ...was the second-fastest mile ever run by a Notre Dame athlete (behind Watson) ... performed well at the indoor BIG EAST Championships ... won both the mile and the 3,000 meters, becoming just the third Notre Dame athlete to win two individual events in the same BIG EAST league meet ... ran 4:12.14 in the finals of the mile and 8:15.22 in the 3,000 meters ... continued his excellent season at the NCAA Indoor Championships ... earned his first career All-American honor in the mile run, taking fourth in 4:02.24 (sixth-fastest in school history) ... also garnered All-American status in the distance medley relay, teaming with Trevor McClain-Duer, Eric Morrison, and Adam Currie to take sixth place ... began the outdoor season by running his first career 5,000 meters at the Stanford Invitational ... ran one of the year's world-leading times and broke Watson's school record with a 13:33.05 performance ... qualified for the NCAA Mideast Regional in the 5,000 meters ... sat out the rest of the outdoor season with an injury.

AS A FRESHMAN: Contributed as one of the top five runners on the 2003 cross country team and developed well during the 2004 track and field season, eventually qualifying as an individual for the NCAA Outdoor Championship ... began his cross country career with a 12th-place effort at the National Catholic, helping Notre Dame claim the team title ... ran well at the BIG EAST Championship, finishing 21st overall ... also ran at the NCAA Great Lakes Regional, finishing 38th ... qualified for the BIG EAST indoor mile competition at the Meyo Invitational, finishing 10th in the Meyo Mile (4:03.67) ... just missed his first BIG EAST Championship at the league indoor meet, finishing second in the mile with a 4:08.74 effort ... also finished fifth in the 3,000 meters at the BIG EAST meet, crossing the finish line in 8:19.61 ... focused almost exclusively on the 1,500 meters during the 2004 outdoor season, steadily improving his time throughout the year ... once again just missed out on a BIG EAST title, finishing second in the 1,500 meters at the outdoor meet (3:50.03) ... ran a spectacular 3:41.95 in the 1,500 meters at the Georgia Tech Invitational, qualifying for the NCAA Mideast Regional ... his 3:41.95 time ranked second all-time in Notre Dame track and field history for the outdoor 1,500 meters ... finished an impressive fifth at the NCAA Mideast Regional in the 1,500 meters, crossing the finish line in 3:51.34 ... appeared in his first NCAA Championship at the outdoor competition, finishing 25th in the 1,500 meters (3:55.13) ... earned all-BIG EAST honors on the only relay in which he competed during the outdoor season, finishing second in the 4x800-meter relay along with teammates Eric Morrison, Kevin Somok and Thomas Chamney.

HIGH SCHOOL AND PERSONAL: One of the top prep cross country and middle distance runners in Ontario over the last four years ... earned a silver medal at the 2003 Pan Am Junior Games, finishing second in the 1,500 meters ... two-time member of the Canadian Junior National Cross Country Team that competed at the World Junior Championships in 2002 and 2003 ... member of the Canadian Junior Track and Field Team that competed at the World Youth Championships in 2001 ... won the 2003 U.S. Junior National 1,500-meter championship after finishing second in 2002 ... placed third in the 2002 National Junior Cross Country Championship ... holds Walkerton school records in the 800, 1,500 and 3,000 meters ... also holds the Ontario Under-19 outdoor 3,000-meter record (8:10.50) ... posts personal-best performances of 8:10.50 in the 3,000 meters, 3:49.08 in the 1,500 meters and 1:51.61 in the 800 meters ... born Jan. 1, 1985, in Walkerton, Ontario ... oldest of two children ... enrolled in the College of Arts and Letters, pursuing his degree in history.

Kurt Benninger
Kurt  Benninger


Chepstow, Ontario

High School:
Walkerton D.S.S.



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