Titusville, Fla. - The Stetson cross country teams ran well in Friday evening's FLRunners.com Invitational at Chain of Lakes Park with the Hatter men placing a strong third of eight teams and the women finishing fifth of seven in their event. Sophomore Andrew Epifanio (DeLand, Fla.) and senior Maria Harper (Tallahassee, Fla.) were the top finishers for each Stetson gender.
Epifanio finished the five-kilometer course in 16:32.56 to finish 11th overall out of 82 runners; he was second among all non-UNF runners as the Ospreys put the first eight finishers across the line to easily win the team competition. Junior Kyle Burton (Oviedo, Fla.) finished 22nd in 17:27.79 with freshman Jeremy Butler (Mims, Fla.), junior Brian Dughi (Jacksonville, Fla.) and sophomore Deryck Greene (Jacksonville, Fla.) all placing in the top 50 as well.
North Florida recorded a perfect 15-point team score (finishers 1-2-3-4-5 added together) to outpace runner-up Saint Leo (55 points) and Stetson (90). The strong runs by the Hatters allowed them to out-point Warner, Jacksonville, Rollins, Florida College and Johnson & Wales.
11) Andrew Epifanio - 16:32.56; 22) Kyle Burton - 17:27.79; 28) Jeremy Butler - 17:52.94; 31) Brian Dughi - 18:09.26; 49) Deryck Green - 19:02.77; 60) Peter Davis - 19:29.22; 63) Angelo Parkinson - 19:33.27; 65) Alexander Kempinski - 20:20.12; 77) Ryan Becker - 21:57.97; 79) Matthew Ady - 22:31.89
Harper was the first Hatter across the finish line in 19:48.80, taking 21st place in the 74-runner field. Sophomore Sabrina Guzsvany (Port Orange, Fla.) was next for Stetson, finishing in 20:54 flat for 34th overall. Junior Alyssa Thompson (Mims, Fla.), sophomore Tabitha Castrillon (Orlando, Fla.) and senior Stephanie Bird (Rockledge, Fla.) all made it into the top 50 runners over the line.
Stetson finished fifth behind A-Sun rivals North Florida and Jacksonville as well as Saint Leo and Palm Beach Atlantic. The Hatters beat out Rollins and Warner.
21) Maria Harper - 19:48.80; 34) Sabrina Guzsvany - 20:54.00; 39) Alyssa Thompson - 21:43.70; 46) Tabitha Castrillon - 22:45.50; 50) Stephanie Bird - 23:36.70; 54) Julie Spear - 24:24.50; 55) Christine Iseley - 24:27.50; 63) Katrina McKay - 26:16.60; 69) Allison Davis - 27:59.30; 72) Gisela Fernandez - 29:38.50
The Hatters will next lace up their running shoes at the Asics Embry-Riddle Classic next Saturday, October 8 in Daytona Beach, Fla.