The Canisius men’s cross country team used a sweep of the top-five places to win its seventh-consecutive Little Three Championship on Friday.
Griffs’ sophomore Michael Anvelt used a late pass of teammate and fellow sophomore Cooper Roach to capture the individual crown by four seconds (15:48). Behind Anvelt and Roach, Canisius took nine of the top eleven spots.
A trio of freshmen rounded out the top-five in their first collegiate race, with Brennan Root, Xavier Savageau and Jeff Antolos took third through fifth respectively.
“The performance of the men was really what we scripted,” said head cross country coach Nate Huckle. “The plan was to go out relaxed and let some of the Niagara and St. Bonaventure runners take the lead for the first mile, then really assert ourselves in the second mile. We executed that and by the time we got through the backside of the course we had one through five.”
The victory marked the eighth straight men’s title for the Griffs, who’ve won 28 of the 43 Little Three Championships.
For the first time in seven seasons Canisius was unable to sweep the event, with the women placing second to St. Bonaventure. The win marked the Bonnies first women’s title since the event added the women’s race in 1983.
The Griffs had three crack the top five, led by the 2010 Individual Champion, senior Mikelle Cala who took home fourth with a time of 19:22. Freshman Haley Keene followed just three seconds behind for fifth place, and junior Jamie Wallace finished in seventh.
Sophomore Robin Wagner (11th) and freshman Macey Walker (13th) rounded out the Canisius scoring.
“It definitely was not what we’re capable of at this point,” Huckle said. “The women just needed to get out a little quicker, they let the Bonnies get away from them a bit. They let them get a little too far ahead and never caught up, but it’s a mistake we won’t make again.”
Next up for Canisius is the annual trip to Notre Dame for the National Catholic Championship. That race will take place on Friday, Sept. 20 with the women starting at 4:15.