The UMBC women's and men's cross country teams get back to action as they will likely face damp conditions in Annapolis on Saturday morning.
The women compete in the Salty Dog Invitational at 9:00 a.m., while the men take part in the Navy Invite at 11:00 a.m. The meets take place at the U.S. Naval Academy Golf Club. The women's field includes Bowie State, Loyola, Maryland, Navy, Towson and UMBC, while the four-team men's field is Navy, Bowie State, Loyola and UMBC.
The starting line for cross country races is on Greenbury Point Road just past the intersection of Providence Road. Parking is available along the side of the Greenbury Point Road.
Worth Noting, Ladies First
- UMBC opened the season on August 31 at the Mount St. Mary's 5K Duals. The ladies posted victories over host Mount St. Mary's (26-33) and Franklin Pierce (17-46), fell by the slimmest of margins to Maryland (28-29) and also were defeated by GW (15-46) and Johns Hopkins (15-48).
- A pair of freshmen placed 1-3 for the women, including newcomer Morgan Casey (Silver Spring, Md./Montgomery-Blair), who crossed the tape in 14th position overall in a time of 19:50.91.
- Senior Kelsey Ponton (Laurel, Md./Reservoir) and freshman Emmy Beyer (Ellicott City, Md./Mount Hebron) placed 20th and 21st respectively in times of 20:02.32 and 20:03.67. Ponton knocked 36 seconds off her time from a year ago and improved her standing by 49 positions.
- At last year's Salty Dog, junior Briana Roberts (Pennsauken, N.J.) sliced 24 seconds off her time from a year ago and led UMBC for the first time in her brief collegiate career. She placed 26th overall of the 92 competitors with a mark of 24.14.78.
- Ponton finished in 43rd place (25:08.20) and junior Kaya Knake (Canton, Mich.) was UMBC's final scorer in 54th position (25:34.44).
And the Gentlemen
- The men started the campaign on August 31 at the Mount St. Mary's 5K Duals. UMBC had five runners cross the line before any other team. The Retrievers defeated host Mount St. Mary's (28-29) and Franklin Pierce (18-45), tied Johns Hopkins (28-28) and narrowly fell to team champion George Washington (23-34).
- UMBC junior Brian Cave (Sykesville, Md./South Carroll) turned in the best performance of his career, leading the Retrievers with an impressive sixth-place finish. Cave nearly bested the 16-minute mark, posting a time of 16:01.89.
- Like his classmate, Miles Smith (La Plata, Md./La Plata) turned in his best collegiate effort. He placed 11th overall in a time of 16:13.25. It was Smith's third trek across the turf in Emmitsburg, but also his third varsity appearance overall.
- Running against tremendous competition in host Navy and American, four Retriever runners placed in the top 15 and that quartet finished within 4.5 seconds of one another at last year's Navy Invite. Senior Matt Kane (Sykesville, Md./Century) placed 11th in a time of 25:48.00.
- Kane moved up 24 places from the race a year ago and sliced over three minutes over his 2016 time. Senior Nathan Nadal (Silver Spring, Md.) crossed in 14th place in a time of 25:52.29.
- The Retrievers' average time of 25:59.56 over the 8k course was nearly 34 seconds better than their 2016 mark of 26:33.11.
- Both squads will compete in Lehigh University's large-scale Paul Short Invitational in Bethlehem, Pa., on Saturday, Sept. 29.