The Loyalist Lancers cross country team travelled to Seneca College last Saturday for their first OCAA competition at the Seneca Sting Invitational. Knowing that in only a few short weeks, the Sting will play host to the CCAA National Cross Country Championships, there were full fields of competitors from across Ontario trying to get a test run on the championship course.
Loyalist had three women and three men entered in the event. The women's race was first up over a 6k course. First year Lancer Sarah Law established herself as an all-Ontario threat, running to an 11th place overall finish. Law, a Trent-Loyalist journalism student, previously competed in the OUA with Trent University but this was her first race since last season. She found the course challenging with hills but gained valuable experience that will help her prepare for nationals. Hannah Valley and Nicole Flynn rounded out the women's team with 65th and 68th place finishes. Both women were making their collegiate debuts and were happy to complete the longest race of their careers.
The men raced a similar course covering 8k. Bobby Buck had an impressive showing in his first college race. Buck settled into an early group just off the lead pack, maintained position through the middle loop, and finished strong to come across the line in 7th place. With most of the major OCAA contenders at this meet it was a good measuring stick of where Buck stands in the province. Second year students John Liana (52nd) and Kai Mackintosh (90th) both had good showings in their first cross country races.
The Lancers next action is Saturday October 13th at Centennial College. Both the women's and men's teams are expected to be at full strength to have team scores as well as individual results.