ALLENDALE – The Michigan men’s cross country team dominated last
Friday’s Michigan Intercollegiate as expected, but not with the
expected cast. Coach Ron Warhurst let his top seven runners rest,
and gave the remainder of the Wolverines a chance to shine.
Michigan, led by sophomore Andrew Ellerton, won by 49 points. Rival
Michigan State placed second and host Grand Valley State finished
third.

“The course was a little tougher than I expected,” said
Ellerton, who finished second. “I just went out relaxed and stayed
with the group.”

Following Ellerton were fifth-year senior Ryan Hesselink,
sophomore Andrew Bauer and juniors Rondell Ruff and Sean Moore. The
top five were side by side until the last kilometer, when the
Wolverines began to separate, finishing within 20 seconds of each
other. Warhurst was very pleased with his team’s performance.

“The group ran very well together,” Warhurst said. “It was great
to have the entire team here, supporting everyone. It was a good
time.”

The top five runners at Allendale will make up the “B” squad for
Michigan at the NCAA Pre-National meet this Saturday in Cedar
Falls, Iowa. Pre-Nationals will feature the top teams in the
country, who will preview the NCAA Championship course and get a
chance to see how they’re developing.

“This will be the first time to Pre-Nationals for a lot of our
guys,” Hesselink said. “It should be a fun race, with over 70 teams
with 1,200 runners among the divisions.”

Warhurst wanted to take the five runners who “wanted to
compete.” He’ll definitely be getting that in Ellerton.

“At the beginning of the year, he was talking about
Pre-Nationals, and I was a little skeptical,” Warhurst said. “But
it was just a matter of time. He just kept getting better a little
bit at a time, and he got what he wanted.”

Warhurst’s “A” squad will consist of his top seven runners. He’s
hoping they will capture a top-six finish this weekend at
Pre-Nationals.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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