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Menís Cross Country Set To Compete At Grand View Invitational

Courtesy: Drake Athletics
Release: September 28, 2011
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Matt Eckman and Matt Jurysta
Courtesy: Doug Wells

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

What's Ahead: The Drake men's cross country team will send a partial squad to Ewing Park in Des Moines to compete in the Grand View Invitational on Friday (Sept. 30). The 8,000-meter race will begin at 5:45 p.m. This will mark the fourth time the Bulldogs have competed this month.

Last Time Out Sophomore Brogan Austin (Boone, Iowa) finished in 57th-place in a field of 220 runners to lead Drake at the Roy Griak Invitational Men's Gold Division cross country meet at the Les Bolstad Golf Course in Falcon Heights, Minn., on Sept. 24.

Austin, who competed as a freshman at the 2011 NCAA Outdoor Track And Field Regional in the 10,000-meters, ran the 8,000-meter course in 25:07.1. Austin was able to shave almost a minute off of his time from a year ago at the Roy Griak Invitational.

As a team, the Bulldogs earned a 22nd-place showing going up against a field featuring three teams ranked in the United States Track and Field and Cross Country Coaches Association National Poll.

Sophomore Omet Kak (Des Moines, Iowa) was 97th crossing the line in 25.37.5. The senior tandem of Colin Hagan (Wichita, Kan.) and Ben Jaskowiak (Madison, Wis.) were the next finishers for Drake with times of 26:04.7 and 26:23.2 to earn 135th and 156th place, respectively.

Junior Charlie Lapham (Golden Valley, Minn.) clocked in at 26.29.1. Freshmen Conor Wells (Des Moines, Iowa) and Tyler Nelson (Lonewood, Colo.), in their first collegiate 8,000-meter race, had times of 26.34.8 and 26.40.7, respectively.

A Year Ago: Luke Schafer placed seventh in the Grand View Invitational men's cross country meet helping lead the Drake junior varsity team to a second-place finish in the eight-team meet.

Schafer was timed in 27 minutes 40 seconds in the 8,000-meter race held at Ewing Park.  

Brandon Lewis was ninth in 27:52, while Nate Paulson was 11th in 28:00. Josh Buschling was 13th in 28:07. Then freshman 
Matt Eckman (Iowa City, Iowa) finished 15th in 28:13.

Austin Wins MVC Athlete Of The Week: The Missouri Valley Conference announced Tuesday that sophomore Brogan Austin was named the State Farm MVC Men's Cross Country Athlete of the Week for the period of Sept. 19-25.

This marks the first accolade for a Drake cross country runner this season, and also the first time Austin has earned the honor during his Drake career.

"Its nice to see Brogan get recognized by the MVC as he's worked incredibly hard over the past year to be competitive with some of the best in the nation," commented head coach Dan Hostager. "His focus is on the end of the season with our MVC Conference & NCAA Regional Championships, so it'll be fun to watch his progress over the next several weeks."

Drake Ranked 12th In USTFCCCA Midwest Regional Rankings: After going up against some the nation's elite programs at the Roy Griak Invitational, Drake fell three spots in this week's United States Track and Field and Cross Country Coaches Association Midwest Region poll with its 12th-place ranking.

The Bulldogs began the year ranked 12th before moving up in the polls thanks to a team title victory at the Oz Memorial earlier this month.

Up Next: The Bulldogs will look to make their dreams come true when they travel to Orlando, Fla., to partake in the Walt Disney Cross Country Classic on Oct. 8.

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