Both the Women’s and Men’s races this Saturday in Illinois were a huge success for Grand Valley State University, with two first place titles and two individual runners placing in the top ten finishers, including Allie Ludge and Tanner Chada. In preparation for the GLIAC Conference in two weeks, the teams will be working hard to maintain their winning streak.
Allie Ludge, senior leader on the women’s team, placed first in the 6k with a time of 22.12.1 with Hannah Groeber right behind her in third with a time of 22.39.7.
GVSU Coach Jerry Baltes said the team was feeling good after the races today and that the women’s team had an especially good race this weekend.
“We thought we’d be in a position to compete for the win if we competed well and took care of business,” Baltes said. “Our women competed very well and dominated the field, our men had some really good things and some things that were just okay, so that made for a much closer race on the men’s side.”
In the Men’s 8k, Chada placed second with a time of 25.08.3 with Jesse Becker in eighth with a time of 25.33.1. Both runners showed off their abilities to some of the competition they’ll be seeing in two weeks, leaving GVSU with a first place title that they plan on keeping intact for the weeks to come.
“On the guys side it’s gonna be a great battle. Michigan Tech did not run their top five men today so I think them and us will fight it out,” said Baltes in regards to the GLIAC Conference championships coming up.
The women are expecting the same results next week since all their main competitors did race this weekend, but the upcoming practices will still be crucial to the success of their long standing reputation as GLIAC Champions.
The cross country team has won the past 17 championships in a row and plan on keeping that streak going this year. The promising results from this week’s race make the team optimistic for their chances in Hammond, Indiana on Oct. 26 for the first race in the conference.
Due to the messy course from all the rain the past couple of days, the runners will be taking a recovery day to, “make sure your bodies aren’t too beat up coming off todays race, and then we get back to work Monday, Tuesday. The next two weeks are really crucial to developing our fitness,” Baltes said.
The cross country teams will travel to Hammond, Indiana on Saturday, Oct. 26, to begin the GLIAC Conference and prove themselves worthy of their 18th conference title.