Junior Spencer Liechty will lead a strong men's team at the 2012 Mount St. Joseph Invitational
Aug. 30, 2012
CINCINNATI - The Xavier men's and women's cross country teams are set to open their 2012 seasons at the Mount St. Joseph Invitational this weekend here in Cincinnati. The event will take place at Heritage Park in Colerain Township with the men starting at 6 p.m. and women to follow at 6:45 p.m. Both teams will be running a 5K.
The Musketeers are sending five men and five women to this season-opening event on Friday. The men are fielding a strong corps of two juniors in Spencer Liechty and Chris Hanson, two sophomores in Matt Orlando and Corey Zielinski and lone freshman Austin Winter and the squad is hoping to finish in the top three. From the women's team junior Madison Riethman is a middle-distance runner for the Musketeers and will use this as a tune-up for track season. Sophomores Carrie Kurish and Emily Kuhn will be joining Riethman on the course along with two newcomers to watch in Victoria Ciotti and Emily Wolery.
Results from this year's event will be posted at ghgtiming.com.
At the Mount St. Joseph meet last season, the women's team was led by a strong first career victory for senior Calesse Cardosi who took first place out of 32 runners with a time of 19:41 in the 5K event. She was closely followed by her teammate sophomore Audrey Ramos who finished second with a time of 20:14. Returning sophomore Kuhn placed 10th with a time of 21:33.
The men were led by a strong group of underclassmen in last year's tournament with six finishing in the top 15. Two then-freshmen also came up big for the Musketeers as sophomore Connor Buchholz finished sixth with a time of 16:47 and Zielinski finished seventh (16:52). Rounding out Xavier finishers were sophomore Aaron Moore who placed 11th (17:10), junior Keith Schenkel who placed 13th (17:40) and Orlando who placed 14th (17:46).
Xavier will be led by head coach Ryan Orner who is in his first season as the coach of men's and women's cross country and track and field teams. Orner heads the Musketeer programs after spending the spring of 2012 as an assistant coach of men's and women's cross country and track and field teams at the University of Cincinnati. At UC, his main responsibility was middle through long distance runners.
"I'm excited to coach all of the talented and hard-working student-athletes that have made this program successful in the past and I'm looking forward to elevating the program to new levels," commented Orner when he was introduced as head coach in late July.
Prior to his stint at Cincinnati, Orner was an assistant at Johns Hopkins University for five seasons. In 2011, Orner was named Mideast NCAA Assistant Coach of the Year for indoor track by the U. S. Track and Field and Cross Country Coaches Association. Orner graduated from Towson University in 1999 and as a senior led the squad to a Maryland State Championship and the most successful season in team history. Orner also qualified for four ECAC championships and was a finalist at the America East Conference Championships in several events.