Home » Sports » Bishop leads Aggie men to fifth-place finish in Loyola Lakefront Invitational

Bishop leads Aggie men to fifth-place finish in Loyola Lakefront Invitational

CHICAGO – Texas A&M’s Jon Bishop led the Aggie men to a fifth-place team performance in the 41st Loyola Lakefront Invitational on Saturday while Ashley Driscoll was the top finisher on the women’s team as they finished ninth in team scoring.

Competing among a field of 30 teams, the Texas A&M men totaled 159 points. Grand Valley State claimed the men’s team title with 59 points and were followed by McMaster (114), Nebraska (141), and Arizona (154).

Finishing behind the Aggies were Wisconsin-La Crosse (166), Washington-St. Louis (207), Missouri (219), Ohio State (248), Chicago (299).

“I thought the men ran pretty solid,” said Texas A&M assistant coach Wendel McRaven. “Getting fifth place is ok, but we’re not doing backflips. Every time we compete in a field like this we want to be in the hunt to try to win the meet.”

Bishop covered the 8,000m course in 24:40.7 to place 18th among a field of 349 runners. Jacob Perry, who has led the Aggies in the first two meets of the season, finished 32nd with a time of 24:59.7. Wes McPhail, a freshman, claimed the third position among the A&M crew as he placed 33rd in 25:00.0.

“It was a change of pace for us, since our home course is very wide, but this course offered some challenges with tight areas and a competitive field,” stated Bishop. “There are a lot of turns and you’re always close to somebody. It was good for us and a good experience.

“We challenged ourselves and tried to get better. That being said, I think we can do better and our team can place higher. So, we’ll try to do that with the rest of the season.”

Zephyr Seagraves, who raced among the lead pack for the first quarter of the race, produced a time of 25:07.2 as he finished 37th. Another freshman, Gavin Hoffpauir, completed the scoring tabulation for the Aggeis as the fifth runner, placing 50th with a clocking of 25:15.2. The scoring places for the team were 16-30-31-35-47.

“They got out well at the start of the race and then did a very nice job of hanging tough,” noted McRaven. “We weren’t perfect, but I was really pleased with the two freshman, McPhail and Hoffpauir, who did a really nice job. Bishop ran tough, even though he wasn’t feeling great. He battled all the way to the finish. There were some good signs in the race.”

Driscoll posted a time of 17:51.7 on the 5,000m course in the women’s race, placing 35th. A pair of freshman were the next finishers for A&M as Carrie Fish placed 47th in 18:01.0 while Rachel Bernardo was 62nd in 18:12.8. The fourth Aggie to complete the course was Valarie Bradley, finishing 65th with a time of 18:14.8. Abbey Santoro became the third freshman among Texas A&M’s top five as she clocked 18:21.7 to place 77th.

“It was good to see everyone pushing each other and getting our group to move up,” said Driscoll. “It felt really nice out here today with the cooler temperatures and less humidity. I enjoyed running 5k today after we raced a 6k last weekend. It felt a lot shorter, even though it was just 1k less.

“The course was really narrow for having such a big field of runners. That was really challenging, just trying to navigate around all the girls that were racing. It was fun and felt like real cross country.”

Princeton won the women’s team title with 65 points while Grand Valley State finished runner-up with 79. Ohio State (85), Illinois (110) and Missouri (140) completed the top five. Also finishing ahead of the Aggies were Washington-St. Louis (217), Arizona (223) and Loyola-Illinois (232).

Texas A&M’s total of 253 points placed them ahead of Nebraska (304), Western Ontario (315), Wisconsin-Milwaukee (368), Oakland (384), Illinois-Chicago (437) and McMaster (465) among the 33 teams that scored.

“The women were buried at the start,” stated McRaven. “That actually helped the men, because we saw what happened and talked about it prior to the men’s start. This course is a little unique in the sense that it narrows so quickly with the big field of runners. We didn’t do a very good job of recovering from that start.

“At the same time, we still had some people run pretty well today and do a nice job. So, there are still a lot of positive signs, but we’re not happy with finishing ninth. Some people need to learn from this and in two weeks face another test with our home meet. We want to be better in two weeks, for sure.”

The rest of the Aggie men’s crew included Noah Jacobs (57th, 25:20.9), Taylor Clayton (120th, 25:52.6), Brandt Preston (225th, 26:48.3), and Harrison Tillman (242nd, 26:59.5).

In the women’s race an A&M trio finished in succession, placing 82-83-84, with Nikki Keys (18:24.5) leading the way as Lauryn Barrientos (18:24.8) and Julia Black (18:26.2) followed. Megan Hopper (108th, 18:44.2) led the next batch of A&M runners, followed by Olivia Arriaza (117th, 18:46.9), Lizette Chapa (125th, 18:49.4), Grace Plain (138th, 19:00.1), and Kelsie Warren (146th, 19:04.2).

Story courtesy of Texas A&M Athletics

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Posted by on Oct 1 2018. Filed under Sports.
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