Cross Country Announces 2016 Schedule

Aug. 4, 2016

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MILWAUKEE – Head coach Mike Nelson and the Marquette University men’s and women’s cross country teams have announced the 2016 schedule that features five competition dates, including the BIG EAST Championships in New York, followed by the NCAA Great Lakes Regional meet and nationals.

“It’s always nice to give our athletes the opportunity to race new competition on new courses and, with the way our schedule is structured, it should make for an exciting year,” said Nelson, who enters his 10th year at the helm. “Only two dates, including the regional meet, will be repeat courses from last year. I really like how this year’s schedule came together.”

The season will kick off on Saturday, Sept. 10 just down the road in Kenosha, where the team will compete in the Midwest Open at Wayne E. Dannehl National Cross Country Course hosted by UW-Parkside.

“I believe the course at Parkside mimics the course at Van Cortlandt (host of the 2016 BIG EAST Championship),” Nelson said. “The similarities are that it’s hilly and challenging. Not only that, but it will give our student-athletes more familiarity of the course, which is good, because Marquette is set to host the 2017 BIG EAST Championships there as well.”

Next on the schedule will be the National Catholic Invitational at Notre Dame on Friday, Sept. 16. It’s a meet the Golden Eagles attend annually as it offers an opportunity to race some great competition against fellow Catholic institutions.

For the first time in two years, MU will travel to the Louisville Classic, set for Saturday, Oct. 1.

“The course suits our athletes well and we enjoy competing there,” Nelson said. “I like that the timing allows us to get into a two-week pattern for the duration of the season, which will help with recovery and training leading up to BIG EAST and the NCAA Regional meet.”

Two weeks later, the Golden Eagles will head to Terre Haute, Indiana to take part in the NCAA Pre-Nationals meet hosted by Indiana State on Oct. 15. It’s the first time in several years that MU will compete at the pre-national meet.

“This meet is known for having a collection of very strong teams and offers a preview of the national championships course,” Nelson said. “More importantly, racing the elite competition at pre-nationals gives us the opportunity to earn at-large points toward qualifying for the NCAA Championships.”

St. John’s will serve as this year’s host of the BIG EAST Championships, which will be held at the aforementioned Van Cortlandt Course in Bronx, N.Y. on Friday, Oct. 28.

“We haven’t been back to Van Cortlandt since 2012, so we’re ready to get back to the Bronx and perform well at this challenging course,” Nelson said.

The NCAA Great Lakes Regional will take place on Friday, Nov. 11, one week prior to the NCAA Championships, and will be hosted by UW-Madison for the fifth year in a row at the Zimmer Championship Course in Verona, Wisconsin.

“We’re looking forward to going back down there and improving upon our performances from last year,” Nelson said. “Hopefully earning the opportunity to race the following weekend in Indiana.”




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