The Emory & Henry Wasps men’s cross country team opened up their season last Thursday in Salem, Virginia. The meet was quite different from the men’s usual 8k races. The team was split up into groups of two and ran four 2,400 meters similar to a relay race. Only two teams competed in the race: the Emory & Henry Wasps and the Roanoke College Maroons.
Emory & Henry’s men fell short to Roanoke with a final score of 18-6, respectively. The duo consisting of Emory & Henry junior Michael Logrande and sophomore Zane Moran finished with the fastest time for the Wasps at 29:32. Senior Wasps Kevin Watts and Alex Cooper covered the course only a second slower.
Moran talked about the hard amount of training they had been through in preparation for the time trial and how he felt different from his freshman year last year, saying, “I think I just feel more prepared for the workload…the mileage base is stronger this year.”
The way this race was run isn’t the only different the men’s team has to face this season. Both the men’s and women’s cross country teams have a new staff onboard, consisting of a new coach from Piedmont College and a new manager, who was a previous teammate in years past. Junior Caleb Simpson decided to step down from team member, and take a giant step up to team manager.
“There is a different perspective. There’s a bit of a different outlook as a manager…being able to watch the workouts and watching people succeed,” said Simpson. “It’s been kind of cool to take a step back and do what the guys need me to do.”
The men finished sixth place in the ODACs last year and came into this season being ranked eighth. When asked what we could expect from this team in the season, Simpson stated, “Well for starters, they’re going to finish higher than eighth,” as Moran smiled in agreeance. Moran added, “Being ranked eighth going into the season really show a lack of respect from the other coaches around the conference and we definitely think that we’re better than that, so that’s going to be our motivation throughout the season.”
The men’s team has a mountain to climb and strides to make this season but they’re ready to take on the marathon.
– Kayla Mullkey