(Photo by BYU Photo)
MADISON, Wis. – Junior Jonathan Nelson led BYU men’s cross country with a 36th-place finish as the Cougars took 13th overall with 378 points at the Wisconsin Adidas Invitational Friday.
“I thought we were solid today,” BYU head coach Ed Eyestone said. “We’ve maintained all year that we can be a top-10 team, so we’ve got some work to do. Overall though, I’m proud of how our guys raced and think we’ll be able to improve and reach our goals.”
Nelson’s time of 24:13 on the 8-kilometer course placed him first among BYU runners for the third time this season. Senior Steve Flint finished second for the Cougars (24:30). Sophomore Connor McMillan (24:33), senior Conner Peloquin (24:34) and junior Aaron Fletcher (24:35) finished within strides of each other to round out the Cougars’ scoring.
Senior Spencer Gardner, who had previously finished in the BYU’s top three in every meet this season, traveled with the team but opted out of the race due to hip and shin pain. Coach Eyestone said he’s hopeful Gardner will be ready for the team’s postseason stretch.
Syracuse won the meet with 85 points. BYU’s West Coast Conference foe Portland took fourth overall with 211 points.
“We further realized that Portland is the team to beat in the conference,” Eyestone said. “We’re going to have to get to work and prepare if we want to contend with them at the conference championship.”
BYU has two weeks to prepare for the WCC Championship. The race will take place on Nov. 1 in Santa Clara, California.