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          Men's XC team to avenge snub

          Peter Cooke

          Issue date: 8/27/10 Section: Sports
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          Kristen Hederstrom leads a pack of Spartans at last year's Bill Sudek Invitational.
          Media Credit: Denton Zhou
          Kristen Hederstrom leads a pack of Spartans at last year's Bill Sudek Invitational.
          [Click to enlarge]
          A disappointing 2009 campaign saw the Case Western Reserve University men's cross country team fall short of reaching the Division III National Championship. The squad finished fifth in the highly competitive USTFCCCA Great Lakes Region, where they missed out on NCAA bid by just four points. But despite the team's shortcomings, a new season means opportunity is knocking at the Spartans' door.

          "I think expectations across the entire team are very high," said senior captain Robert Ontko. "Everyone looks like they're in a lot better shape than they have been in the past few years. [NCAA's in] Iowa is always on our mind."

          In order for the team to travel to Wartburg College for the national championship, it will need to qualify for a bid. Automatic bids are given to the top two teams in each conference, with up to three other schools receiving at-large bids. The Spartans, although they finished fifth last year, drew the short straw and were forced to watch while Mount Union College, who finished just four points and eighteen seconds ahead at Regionals, received a bid.

          The Spartans aren't letting the other schools get in the way; they have their eye on a top spot and an automatic bid, far, far away from the bubble where they finished last year.

          "We're looking real good.We've done a lot of test sets and everyone has high expectations for this year," said sophomore Chris Kelly.

          The Spartans' first test will be in two weeks when the team hosts the Bill Sudeck Classic at the Squire Vallevue Farm. This will be the Spartans' first chance to trot out their new squad, which lost just one senior from last year's Great Lakes Regional crew.

          "The Sudeck Invite will be a great test to see where we're at early in the season. Allegheny, who was third in the nation last year, will be there and we want to keep it close to them, because if we're able to pressure them it will definitely put us in a good place," said Kelly.
          Continued...
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          In This Issue

          News

          • Major work on LGBT Center completed
          • Meet your USG Executive Board
          • More to coffee than its morning punch
          • New international student orientation session debuts
          • Optimizing your credit cards
          • University names new controller
          • USG Briefs: Filer to be taken offline

          Sports

          • A conversation with Otto Penicka, voice of Spartan athletics
          • Another year, another slap in the face
          • Conference Previews
          • Men's XC team to avenge snub
          • Spartan Spotlight: Cindy Spahn
          • Spartan women have their eye on return trip to Nationals
          • Women's Soccer looks to build on surprising season

          Opinion

          • Flouting the system, 101
          • Letter to the Editor: Commutes Students Association offers home to all CWRU students
          • Sex and Dating
          • Spreading the wealth
          • Student body, SEC ready to move on

          Focus

          • Going back to Those Gold Soundz: I was a six-year-old Phish phan
          • Kate Voegele, Meagan McCormick charm crowd at Welcome Back Concert
          • One student's story: wielding Magic in foreign countries.
          • Scott Pilgrim epitomizes style over substance in Scott Pilgrim vs. the World
          • SEC positively affecting campus
          • The Buzz
          • Welcome Back Comedy Night a real laugh
          • Welcome Days
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