Courtesy Quackenbos Georgetown travels to Terre Haute, Ind. for the NCAA Championship race Monday.

The nationally 13th ranked men’s cross country team hopes to continue their trend of race-by-race improvement when it lines up for the National Championship meet Monday in Terre Haute, Ind. Head Coach Patrick Henner was highly confident in his team. “More so than any of our teams in the past few years, this team has proven the ability to run well in a big meet,” Henner said.

The Hoyas will line up seniors Mike Smith, Dan Tebbano, Dylan Welsh, junior Kalpanatit Broderick, sophomore Rod Korborsi and freshmen Fleet Hower and Chris Luckezic for their biggest race of the year. Only Luckezic sat out of the last weekend’s Mid Atlantic regional, but the Hoyas feel refreshed and ready to go. “Everyone on the team has told me that they have felt good this week,” Henner said. “We are going to have a light workout on Thursday, but our training is wrapped up.”

With a favorable forecast set for Monday, the relatively flat course and extraordinary field should lead to a quick pace early in the race. Henner’s main concern heading into Monday is the early establishment of the Hoyas’ racing positions, which he views as critical to the team’s success.

“We would like to see our runners in position by the two kilometer mark,” Henner said. But the Hoyas are weary of letting the hype of a big meet affect them in the early stages of the race.

“In a meet like this one, guys will be going out way too fast, especially with the first mile being down hill,” Broderick said. Henner echoed Broderick’s sentiments.

“It is important for us to be in position early, but we all know it’s a 10K.”

Broderick feels that the pack running style of the men’s top seven will help the team. “We would like to have our first group of runners anywhere from 50th-60th early in the race and our second group in the 80s. From there, we all feel that we can work together and move up throughout the race,” Broderick said. A controlled advance after an early establishment of position is what Henner believes is suitable for the wide-open course in Terre Haute.

“None of our runners had trouble moving up at Pre-Nationals due to the nature of the course,” said Henner. “There is more than enough room to move.”

The Hoyas remain confident, albeit circumspect about their team goals heading into Monday. “There are three or four teams out there we aren’t ready to beat this year, three to four we’re capable of beating, and then three or four who will beat us if we have an off day,” Henner said. “But our main concern is executing our race plan and running tough. If we do that, we will have favorable results.”

Broderick maintains a similar attitude. “We’re all going to run tough, and we would like to have as many All-American finishers as possible.”

Having fallen in national polls, the Hoyas aim to make a statement at nationals. The team posted stronger results as the season progressed which may lead to a culminating performance on onday.

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