Ty McCormack

Sept. 28, 2013

Charlottesville, Va.- Against a very strong field, the Auburn men’s cross country team finished fifth and the women finished eighth at the Virginia-Panorama Farms Invite. Junior Ty McCormack led the men with a third place finish, while freshman Rachel Givens led the women with a 23rd place finish.  The Auburn men with 106 points were just five points behind third-place Virginia, who is ranked 16th nationally.

“I’m very proud of the way both of our teams competed against some very good competition and nationally ranked teams,” Auburn cross country coach Mark Carroll said. “Our men were just five points behind Virginia who is ranked 16th nationally. To compete like our men did against this field shows we are a strong team. Everyone ran really well and established new personal bests, led by Ty McCormack.”

With seven personal bests on the men’s side, McCormack led the Tigers finishing third in the 8k run with a season-best time of 23:50.8. Teammates Kane Grimster (24:08.8) and Samuel Mueller (24:09.1) finished 15th and 16th, respectively. Juniors Niklas Buhner (24:19.3) finished 26th and Francis Hernandez (24:50.6) finished 47th to round out the Auburn scoring. Seniors Andrew Scott (25:45.8) finished 82nd and Jason Miller (25:58.4) finished 88th.



North Carolina won the men’s team title with 58 total points, followed by No. 11-ranked Eastern Kentucky (76 pts.). Host Virginia (101 pts.) was third, followed by Duke (104 pts.) finished fourth, and the Auburn (106 pts). The men’s field featured 11 of 13 teams that are ranked in their respective regionals.

“Our women had a strong performance and ran in a pack very well, while being led by Rachel and Veronica,” Carroll said. “We have a young women’s team, so this was a great experience for them to run against high-level competition. I’m proud of their showing.”

With five new personal bests by the Tiger women, Givens led the group finishing the 5k run in 17:39.8, good for 23rd place. Teammates Veronica Eder (17:42.8) was right behind Givens, finished 24thErika Kolakowski (18:12.3) finished 39th, Kristin Sheehan (18:26.6) was 53rd and Sage Blackwell (18:30.1) crossed in 57th place to round out the Auburn scoring. Freshman Emily Stevens (18:50.0) finished 73rd and sophomore Madeline Sharp (20:13.8) finished 110th.

Virginia won the women’s team title with 42 points, followed by 14th-ranked William & Mary with 67 points. Eastern Kentucky (118 pts.), Harvard (142 pts.) and Ole Miss (148 pts.) rounded out the top five teams. California (156 pts.) finished sixth, UNC-Greensboro (168 pts.) was seventh followed by Auburn (194 pts.). Ten of the 13 women’s programs competing are regionally ranked.

“Overall, it was a very good meet for us and a very valuable experience,” Carroll said. “We are in good physical shape and mentally we are in a good place as we begin to train for the next month leading up to SECs.”

The Tigers will have two weeks off before returning to action Oct. 18 at the Crimson Classic in Tuscaloosa, Ala.

For the latest news and updates on Auburn Cross Country, follow @AUtrack on Twitter.  

Men’s Team Results 1. North Carolina, 58; 2.Eastern Kentucky, 76; 3. Virginia, 101; 4. Duke, 104; 5. Auburn, 106; 6. Liberty , 141; 7. Virginia Tech, 197; 8. William & Mary, 205; 9. California, 226; 10. High Point, 239; 11. George Mason, 294; 12. Ole Miss, 337; 13. UNC-Greensboro, 371.

AU Men’s Individual Results
3. Ty McCormack, 23:50.8
15. Kane Grimster, 24:08.8
16. Samuel Mueller, 24:09.1
26. Niklas Buhner, 24:19.3
47. Francis Hernandez, 24:50.6
82. Andrew Scott, 25:45.8
88. Jason Miller, 25:58.4

Women’s Team Results 1. Virginia, 42; 2. William & Mary, 67; 3. Eastern Kentucky, 118; 4. Harvard, 142; 5. Ole Miss, 148; 6. California, 156; 7. UNC-Greensboro, 168; 8. Auburn, 194; 9. North Carolina, 203; 10. Virginia Tech, 279; 11. Navy, 298; 12. Liberty, 346; 13. High Point, 347; 14. George Mason, 361.

AU Women’s individual Results
23. Rachel Givens, 17:39.8
24. Veronica Eder, 17:42.8
39. Erika Kolakowski, 18:12.3
53. Kristin Sheehan, 18:26.6
57. Sage Blackwell, 18:30.1
73. Emily Stevens, 18:50.0
110. Madeline Sharp, 20:13.8