The Stetson men’s and women’s cross country teams will compete in the Asics Embry-Riddle Classic in Daytona Beach on Saturday morning. This is the third race of the season for the Hatters.
Stetson is one of 15 schools scheduled to compete in the race. The men are slated to run at 7:20 a.m., with the women’s race to follow at 8 a.m.
“Tomorrow is another good test for us,” head coach Joe Matuszczak said. “It is probably one of the tougher courses in Florida, but we are not facing competition as steep as the last couple weeks. This is a chance for us to get good results moving into next couple weeks where we race on easier courses, and tomorrow will help us get ready.”
The Hatters ran in the UF Mountain Dew Invitational last week against a strong field. The men finished 17th, and the women 18th. Freshman Trixi Menge led the women, finishing with a time of 20:53.08, and junior Andrew Epifanio was the top runner for the men, finishing with a time of 28:47.83.
The Hatter women have been without their top runner, junior Sabrina Guzsvany, for the last two races due to a foot injury. She ran in the meet last week, but did not finish.
“Right now, we are just trying to nurture her back to health,” Matuszczak said. “We have big plans for Sabrina, so we are just trying to get her healthy early in the season.”
This is a race the Hatters have had some success with in the past. The Stetson men finished second last season and the women finished third.
“Historically, we place better at this meet,” Matuszczak said. “This race doesn’t get the pull of the major D-1 teams, so we have potential for top three. We don’t have everybody at 100 percent, so it is better for us to get a quality race out of everybody rather than placing well.”