Sept. 30, 2011
LOUISVILLE, Ky. -
The University of Louisville men's and women's cross country teams are set to take part in the 10th annual Greater Louisville Classic, deemed the 'South's Largest Collegiate Cross Country Meet,' on Saturday, Oct. 1, at its home course, E.P. 'Tom' Sawyer State Park. The field features 96 colleges and universities from 16 states, with more than 2,000 athletes expected to compete.
The men's gold race, which Louisville will be running in, is an 8K competition and begins at 9:30 a.m. The Louisville women are set to compete in its gold race, a 5K course, at 10:15 a.m. Following that will be four more collegiate races, with men's teams racing at 10:45 am. and noon, while the women's teams will run at 11:30 a.m. and 12:30 p.m.
The Cardinal men enter Saturday ranked No. 26 nationally in the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association poll. Last time out, the men competed in the Navy Invitational, placing fourth out of 11 teams. Sophomore Tyler Byrne followed his season-opening victory at the Mid-America Opener with a second-place finish in the 8K, with a time of 24:22.60. Senior Luke Lovelace placed 13th, and redshirt junior Gordon Dooley (18th) and redshirt senior Matt Bruce (20th) rounded out the team's top-20 placewinners.
The men's program has captured the last two Greater Louisville Classic titles, placing first out of 38 teams in 2010 - more than 50 points better than the runner-up - and defeating 38 teams in 2009, with the closest competitor, Kentucky, 85 points behind. In total, the men have won the competition five times (2004, 2006-07, 2009-10).
On the women's side, freshman Madie Davidson has led the charge, finishing second in the season-opener (Mid-America Opener; 14:57 in 4K) and placing third at Navy's Salty Seadog Invitational (22:06.44 in 6K). Classmate Michelle Molodynia also has put together a solid performance in her first two races, finishing eighth and 21st, respectively. Collectively, the women placed second at the Mid-America Opener and sixth at the Navy Invitational.
Of the teams competing this weekend, four are nationally ranked - Eastern Kentucky (men are No. 26), Michigan (women are No. 13), West Virginia (women are No. 24) and Vanderbilt (women are No. 3) - and one is receiving votes (Alabama men).
For all of the latest information on Louisville cross country and track and field, log on to UofLsports.com, or, for up-to-the-minute updates, follow the team's Twitter account at www.twitter.com/louisvilletrack.