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The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

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Ags begin season at Auburn invitational

The Texas A&M Cross Country team will travel to Auburn, Ala., to participate in the Auburn Invitational on Saturday.
Head Coach Dave Hartman said the Auburn Invitational will be the teams’ first real meet of the season. After the Aztec Invitational was canceled in San Diego and running the B-squad members at the Baylor Invitational last weekend, the Aggies have a chance to show their strengths in a truly competitive meet.
“We have a good shot of winning … We expect it to be competitive, but if we race the way we are capable of, we can challenge both team titles in the Auburn meet,” Hartman said.
The cancellation of the Aztec Invitational due to the terrorist attacks meant the women’s team missed the chance to defend their 2000 Aztec championship, and the men missed the chance to repeat winning top honors at the Aztec.
This week’s meet in Auburn is a chance for the Aggies to put their feet to the test against some of the top teams from the region.
“There’s going to be some pretty strong teams from the South regions and the Southeast regions,” Hartman said.
“That’s going to be good. We are going to race teams in that region so we get to see what they are like when we get to nationals.”
Hartman will use the Auburn Invitational as a chance to scout the competition prepare the team for qualifying at the Big 12 Championship in Norman, Okla., on Oct. 27.
The FinishLynx NCAA Cross Country poll ranked the A&M’s women team as No. 18 nationally. The men’s team was not ranked as of yet, but Hartman expects a strong performance from them, and this years squad to be the highest ranked men’s team in A&M school history.
The men’s and women’s teams red-shirted several runners, who, as veteran members of the team, have the experience and the ability to propel them to top finishes and championships.
“We redshirted 2 of our better runners (for the men’s team),” Hartman said. “We are going to redshirt a couple of our top girls, so it’s going to be a very young squad but it’s going to be a very capable squad.

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