XC: UTA braces for Friday's Notre Dame Invitational

Senior Aaron Purser and the Mavs head to South Bend, Ind., on Friday.

Oct. 3, 2013

ARLINGTON, Texas - The UT Arlington cross country teams will continue their seasons with a second straight high-profile meet when they compete Friday at the 58th Notre Dame Invitational at the Burke Golf Course in South Bend, Ind.

The women will be competing in the Gold Division race, while the men secured a hard-to-come-by spot in the Blue Division race.

"This meet is going to be another great challenge for our teams," head coach John Sauerhage said. "The Sun Belt Championships are just a month away, so we've reached a key point in our season."

The seven females competing for the Mavericks will be Gabriela Alfonzo, Elin Andersson, Sydney Hampton, Katelyn Hayward, Hannah Nilsson, Alison Williams and Ashly Wright. Alfonzo paced the Mavs at the UTA Season Opener, while Nilsson led the crew at the Cowboy Jamboree.

The women's competition in the Gold Division will be: Belmont, Butler, Calvin, Central Michigan, Clemson, Eastern Illinois, Eastern Michigan, Eastern Washington, Grand Valley, Green Bay, Hillsdale, Indiana State, IPFW, IUPUI, Loyola, Oakland, Pittsburgh, Southern Illinois, UIC, UMKC, Valparaiso, Western Illinois, Western Michigan, Windsor and Wisconsin-Oshkosh.

"The women have enjoyed a strong season thus far and our goal is to keep it going this week," Sauerhage said. "They trained very hard during the offseason and it has really shown."



For the men, the seven runners making the trip to Indiana include: Emil Blomberg, Grant Copeland, Craig Lautenslager, Virgilio Martinez, Eric Ojeda, Aaron Purser and Ryan Tilotta. Tilotta has been the squad's top performer in each of the first two meets this year.

The men will run against a very talented field that includes eight teams (No. 7 Tulsa, No. 9 Princeton, No. 21 New Mexico, No. 22 Notre Dame, No. 24 Virginia, No. 26 Florida State, No. 29 Michigan and No. 30 Columbia) ranked among the USTFCCCA's top 30.

Also in the field are: Air Force, Belmont, Butler, Colorado State, Eastern Michigan, Eastern Washington, Illinois, Indiana State, Lamar, Lipscomb, Loyola, Minnesota, Missouri, Ohio State, Purdue, Southern Illinois, Southern Utah, UTEP and Washington State.

"Our men have been afforded a great opportunity to compete in the Blue Division, and we are looking forward to taking advantage of this chance," Sauerhage said. "Now it's time to step up and compete."

Flotrack.com will provide scoring of Friday's meet. The UTA women are slated to run at 1 p.m. (CT), while the men will race at 5 p.m. (CT).



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