GAINESVILLE, Fl. – Georgia Tech women’s cross country opened up the 2020 season with a first-place team performance, with the men earning second-place at the Mountain Dew Invitational in Gainesville, Fl. Senior women’s distance runner Nicole Fegans also won the women’s 6K race, clocking in with a time of 20:50.
The Tech women finished the race at 25 points to take home the invitational title, with Florida State coming in second with 30. Miami’s women came in third at 83 points and host Florida fielded an incomplete team. On the men’s side the Jackets ended with 53 points. FSU took first for the men with 19 points, Florida came in third at 68 and Miami’s men rounded out the team scoring at 110 to place last.
“Race day is always exciting, but this one was a little extra,” said head men’s & women’s cross country coach Alan Drosky. “It was like there were two separate competitions, one just to get to the starting line and then the other, to the finish. Both required great team efforts.”
When Fegans crossed the finish line she was nearly seven full seconds ahead of Florida State’s Rebecca Clark (20:57). Five Yellow Jacket women placed in the top-10. Senior Liz Galarza was Tech’s second finisher coming in fourth-place with a time of 21:08. The Jackets third runner to cross the line would be another senior, Mary Claire Solomon, who came in at 21:14 to take fifth. Juniors Mary Kathryn Knott (21:21) and Claire Moritz (21:30) rounded out the top-10 finishers for Tech as they came in seventh and eighth place, respectively.
“Having a forty-second spread between our first and fifth runners, with our first runner winning the race, is tough to beat,” added Drosky. “It was great to see and gives us momentum going into the next race.”
“Today was well worth the wait to race again,” said Fegans. “Leaving Florida with a win feels amazing. I know how hard all of us have worked to get here, so it is awesome to see it play out.”
Junior James Cragin and sophomore Nick Nyman led the swarm for the Yellow Jacket men as both runners earned top-10 finishes in the 8K. Cragin ran to a sixth-place spot on the men’s leaderboard, clocking in at 25:15. Nyman came in 10th at 25:25, closely followed by fellow Jackets junior Harrison Morris (11th-place, 25:25) and freshman Devin Wade (12th-place, 25:26).
“Several of our freshmen men ran really well,” Drosky said. “But, we had inconsistent results from some of our veterans. Our depth cam through today, however, we will a stronger presence up front as the season moves on.”
Georgia Tech will return to the course and The Sunshine State on Oct. 2 for the FSU Invitational in Tallahassee, Fl.
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