Performance of the Meet: Justin Michele, 17:49 (-0:29 PR!)
- #8 All-Time Sophomore
- #6 Fastest for 2015 Season
It was a hot and muggy day in East Lansing, as the sun slowly crept out from behind the storm clouds and the saturated golf course provided us with much humidity throughout the day. The boys were much eager to see where they would stack up to in a field of 43 of the top teams in the State – yes, 43 teams toed the line at once! It was to be a difficult task form a team stand point, and as the week leading into the meet progressed we realized it would be much more difficult than anticipated with illness starting to spread throughout the team. The varsity squad competed without one of their senior captains as Conor Donnelly stayed home with a 100+ degree fever, while a handful of others on the team managed to gut it out while sick and still competed very well (more on this later).
The Varsity race saw the return of Anthony Giannobile (53rd, 16:56) who is coming off some knee soreness and showed that he is beyond capable of immediately being a low stick and a front runner for the Eagles. As a spectator it was a little difficult to tell whether it was race anxiousness or just pure competitiveness (probably the latter) but we saw Anthony jump right into the mix of the chase pack and cruised through the 800 to 1.5miles around 20th place in the race. Unfortunately his race fitness isn’t all the way back and it started to take a toll as he slowly slid back, but was able to reclaim a few spots with his outstanding finish speed! Sam Jyawook (DNF) was looking to make a huge breakthrough, patiently working his way up through the dense crowd. It looked as if he was going to finish with a huge PR, coming through 2miles in 10:53 but his illness got the better of him as he had to pull out of the race shortly after. Freshman sensation Tristan Williams (66th, 17:03 *PR*) finished the race as the team’s #2 man knocking off another 17-seconds off of his first race and almost breaking the 17-minute barrier! Not far behind was the dual of Zach Reynolds (141st, 17:38) and Justin Michele (165, 17:49 *PR*)! Even though he had just started to bounce back from being sick, Zach insisted that he compete and be there for his teammates and did a great job helping pull Justin to a new PR! For Justin it was his first race to go under the 18-minute barrier and the closer he can get to the top 5 guys only helps the team grow stronger – great work! Rounding out the Varsity line up was Kobi Eichner (241st, 18:44) and Liam Smith (244th, 18:47).
The Reserve race was one that could best be described as a zoo, with over 900 athletes competing in the event and even more incredible news is that there were 2 Reserve races! Jacob Thomas (33rd, 18:22) bounced back nicely from his Jamboree 1 performance and led the way working alongside Jesse Edelstein (39th, 18:30). Not far behind them was Garrett Peck (45th, 18:33) who again ran an absolutely well paced race and reeled in runners by the dozens over the final mile of the race. The trio of Ben Shotwell (82nd, 18:52), Cooper Klein-Kassab (84th, 18:53) and Keegan Oldani (119th, 19:08) somehow managed to find each other early on in the race and stuck together throughout the entirety of the course. What seems to be the theme of the day (racing with friends) saw Sabir Islam (19:36) and Seamus McWilliams (19:36) finish with matching times. Much like what we saw at Jamboree 1, Brian York (19:52) led the way for a line of Columbia Blue uniforms finishing within each other. Finishing in near identical order from last week was Shreeman Nimmagadda (19:56), AJ Cloutier (20:01), Dylan Reynolds (21:09), Alejandro DeKeyzer (21:38), Daniel York (21:51) and Yunfei Ma (21:59) – great work fellas! New addition Johnathan Faulkner (22:55) did a great job in his first ever 5k, Johnathon joined the team recently with hopes to build some base for the track season where he is a long-sprints/hurdles guy. Knocking off over a minute form his previous race was Collin Van Loo (23:17) – way to go Collin!!! Also completing their first 5k’s of the 2015 season was Wayne Wang (25:22) and Colbert Lu (27:08).
The Eagles will now have a week off from competition and look to bounce back in full health at SEC Jamboree 2, hosted by Bedford High School.