Brunnette paces Panthers with top-10 individual finish
WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. – The Plymouth State University men's cross country team placed 18th at the Williams College Purple Valley Classic hosted by Mount Greylock High School on Saturday while competing against some of the top runners in the nation.
In a field littered with 2016 All-Americans, the Panthers finished ahead of Norwich University, Colby-Sawyer College and the Coast Guard Academy, all three of which finished in the top 17 of the region last year.
"Our guys took a nice step forward as a team," said head coach John Ostler. "I was very pleased to capture a top-twenty finish in a field of this caliber. We decided to come to this race to get a sense of what national caliber teams and individuals look like and how they race. Our guys held their own and took away a lot of good lessons that will help us get better."
Junior Sam Brunnette (Newport, Vt.) took ninth place, finishing the 8K race in a time of 26:38.6, less than 50 seconds behind the individual champion. Classmate Warren Bartlett (Loudon, N.H.) was PSU's second fastest racer, earning an 85th place finish with a time of 27:59.4. Freshmen Marcus Cryan (Topsfield, Mass.) and Jared Wolf (Tyngsborough, Mass.), and junior Chaim Tendler (Manchester, N.H.) rounded out the team's top five.
"Sam took advantage of competing against national caliber competition to establish himself as one of the top runners in New England," Oster added. "Warren was solid as always and Marcus continues to race like an upperclassman in his first season of college racing. I'm excited to see what we're capable of considering our guys haven't even all clicked at the same time yet."
The Plymouth State runners are off for a week before traveling to Westfield State University for the James Earley Invitational on Saturday, October 7. Start time is 11:00 a.m.
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