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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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June 16, 2024

Run, Aggies, Run

Senior+Wes+McPhail%26%23160%3Bfinished+in+94th+place+at+the+third+annual+Arturo+Barrios+Invitational%2C+covering+the+8k+course+in+a+time+of%26%23160%3B25%3A14.4.
Photo by Photo by Aiden Shertzer/Texas A&M Athletics

Senior Wes McPhail finished in 94th place at the third annual Arturo Barrios Invitational, covering the 8k course in a time of 25:14.4.

The men and women’s cross country teams both secured top-five finishes in a field of 30-plus competitors at Saturday’s home meet.
Back in action at the Dale Watts ‘71 Cross Country Course on Oct. 16 for the annual Arturo Barrios Invitational, redshirt junior Eric Casarez said he hoped for a fourth straight win on a cool morning but fell just shy of victory. The women’s dominant streak of three straight team victories also came to an end with a fourth place finish. The men’s team finished fifth overall.
The head coach described the results as positive and a valuable lesson ahead of the SEC championship meet.
Casarez held the lead for most of the meet, but junior Davis Bove from LSU outpaced him near the end and finished in first with a time of 23:28.5. Casarez finished with a time of 23:34.2 on the 8K course.
Coach Wendel McRaven said he was going to focus on the positives going into the final stretch of the season.
“It’s good we got tested this week and got beat a little bit by some people,” McRaven said. “It helps keep us hungry going into the SEC Championships.”
Senior Gavin Hoffpauir, 24:35.7, sophomore Joseph Benn, 24:36.0, and junior Brady Grant, 24:37.4, all had top-50 finishes coming in 46th, 47th and 48th place, respectively. The men’s cross country team finished with a total of 204 points.
In the women’s 6K, senior Julia Black once again led the way and finished in 14th place with a time of 20:57.3. Senior Abbey Santoro was not far behind, finishing in 16th place with a time of 21:00.0.
At the 4.1K split, Black and Santoro as well as freshmen Maddie Livingston and Gemma Goddard and senior Grace Plain were all on pace to finish in the top 20, but Plain stumbled behind and finished in 142nd place with a time of 23:14.0.
“We were running really well,” McRaven said. “We kept closing the gap and then all of a sudden we were fourth in the team standings. Julia [Black], Abbey [Santoro], Gemma [Goddard] and Maddie [Livingston] were all fine, and then I couldn’t find Grace [Plain] in the results.
“Just our fifth falling back so far is what hurt us a little bit,” McRaven said. “It is OK. We are going to learn from that and get better. We know that we have to be deeper than just five runners. Our six, seven and eight runners are really important in case we have a day where our fifth runner falls behind.”
Livingston finished in 28th place, clocking in at 21:24.1, and Goddard finished in 38th with 21:33.1. The Aggies wrapped up the afternoon with a total of 150 points.
Next up for A&M is the SEC Championship on Oct. 29 at the Gans Creek Cross Country Course in Columbia, Mo.

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