What is the secret to winning a Cross Country race? Do you go out fast and hope that no one stays with you? Or do you conserve your energy and pass people at the end?
Well, the truth is, none of these. This is because Cross Country is a team sport where the overall team scores are based on the places of the top five runners from each team. For instance, if a runner representing one school does great and receives first place, that runner's team may still loose to another team that fought hard and placed their top five in front of the runner's other four teammates. Everyone is in it together, all fighting on the same battlefield.
Last week, the Men's Cross Country team competed at the College of DuPage Invitational. Leading the charge for Illinois Tech was Landon Vowels, a phenomenal sophomore, who finished the 8 kilometer race in a personal best time of 26:33 and 18th place! Behind him was a solid pack consisting of Phillip Cano, Ethan Montague, Peter Lau, and Andrew Montague who crossed the line in 67th, 68th, 72nd, and 74th.
In total, our Scarlet Hawks scored 263 points, finishing the day in 7th out of 24 teams. This was good enough to score better than DI Chicago State, DII Quincy University, DIII Concordia University, Elmhurst College and Maranatha Baptist College and also higher than NAIA teams Robert Morris, Roosevelt University and Calumet College of St Joe's. This goes to show that in Cross Country, you can take five average guys who believe in each other and win.