Olson runs fastest freshman 8k time in school history
DARTMOUTH, Mass. – Freshman Michael Olson (Sutton, Mass.) posted the fastest 8k time for a first-year runner to pace the Plymouth State University men's cross country team to a third place finish at the Little East Conference (LEC) Cross Country Championships on the campus of UMass Dartmouth on Saturday.
Olson and senior Noah Byington (Hanscom AFB, Mass.) each earned All-LEC recognition after the duo posted top-ten finishes.
Plymouth State's third place finish matched the program record at the LEC Championship meet, first established in 2015, then equaled against last fall.
Southern Maine captured the LEC team title with 37 points, while the host Corsairs took second with 47 points. PSU (75) narrowly snuck past Eastern Connecticut (77) to round out the top three.
LEC Cross Country Championships (8k) - Plymouth State 3rd of 8 teams
How it Happened:
- Olson was the Panthers' top finisher for the third straight race after crossing the line in 25:49.93 to place sixth.
- Byington held on for All-Conference honors by taking tenth with a time of 26:07.58, while freshmen Michael Barrett (Hartford, Conn.) and Brent Coope (Wolfeboro, N.H.) ended 19th and 20th, respectively. Barrett posted a time of 26:47.11, while Coope was right behind him in 26:56.08.
- Sophomore Ben Platt (Manchester, N.H.) finished in 25th place in 27:11.98, with junior Jared Wolf (Tyngsborough, Mass.) ending 28th in 27:22.86.
- Sophomore Kyle Mau (Dover, N.H.) was the Panthers' final point-scorer after placing 34th with a time of 27:38.33.
Inside the Numbers:
- Olson's time was the fastest among freshmen in program history, besting the previous mark of 25:53.50 set by Sam Brunnette in Nov. 2015.
- Olson's time was also his fastest by almost a full minute. Only two other runners in program history have recorded faster times; Brunnette and Warren Bartlett.
- All seven of Plymouth State's point-scorers established new personal records.
- The Panthers' top five spread was 1:22.05, and the team's top-five average time of 26:34.54 was a season-best for an 8k race.
Straight From the Coach's Mouth:
"Our guys had their eyes on third all year," said head coach John Ostler. "Eastern Connecticut has some talent and is very well coached. We're proud to come out on top over them today. Hats off to our seniors today – especially Noah [Byington], Ben [Platt] and Trevor [Campbell] who all turned in career bests today when we needed it most. And anytime someone breaks a Sam Brunnette record, you have to applaud it. Mike [Olson] was dynamic today."
Plymouth State will enjoy a two-week break in competition before traveling to Bowdoin on Nov. 16 for the NCAA Div. III New England Regional Championships.
|Byington (left) and Olson (fifth from left) earned All-LEC honors with top-ten finishes.|
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