Sept. 28, 2007
NOTRE DAME, Ind. - The 12th-ranked Notre Dame men's cross country team found success with returnees and freshman running together as they took the team title at the 52nd Notre Dame Invitational, beating out ninth-ranked North Carolina State Friday afternoon at the nine-hole Notre Dame Golf Course. The Irish have now won their first three meets of the 2007 season with today's victory.
The Irish finished with 92 points for the win with second-place North Carolina State finishing with 106 points in the elite five-mile Blue Division race that featured 23 teams. Junior Patrick Smyth (Salt Lake City, Utah/Judge Memorial) was the leader for Notre Dame finishing in second place with a time of 23:44, a personal best on the Notre Dame home course and just seven second shy of Joshua McDougal of Liberty who took the crown with a time of 23:37.
Highlighting the day for the men's team were freshman Dan Jackson (Ann Arbor, Mich./ Dexter) and Paul Springer (Kennett Square, Pa./Unionville), both of whom made impressive runs today, helping the Irish to victory. Head coach Joe Piane commented that both performances were "impressive and outstanding". Jackson finished third for the team in 14th place with a time of 24:19, bettering his time of 24:50 which he ran at the National Catholic Championship two weeks ago. Springer also made improvements, finishing the course in 24:36 for a 34th-place finish overall and fifth for the Irish. Springer ran the five-mile course with a time of 24:53 two weeks ago at the National Catholic Championship.
On the women's side, the 27th-ranked Irish struggled in the highly competitive Blue Division field, finishing 12th of 21 teams with 305 points. Unranked Rice University came away with the win with 118 points with 6th-ranked Illinois finishing second with 139 points. Freshman Marissa Treece (Maple City, Mich./Glen Lake) once again led the Irish with a 17th-place finish with a time of 17:24. Treece ran a time identical to the one she paced at the National Catholic Championship two weeks ago.
Both Notre Dame cross country teams will return to action Oct. 13 when they travel to Terre Haute, Ind., to compete in the Pre-National Meet held on the LaVern Gibson Championship Course at the Wabash Valley Family Sports Center. Results will be available on the official Notre Dame athletics web site (www.und.com) and the Notre Dame Sports Hotline (574) 631-3000.