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The Collegian

The Student News Site of Ashland University

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Ashland University

The Collegian

Michael Snopik Leads the Way for Eagle Cross Country at GMAC Championships 

The sophomore standout earned second-team all GMAC honors by finishing in 19th place with a personal best 8K time of 25:51.6
AU Athletics
The Eagles compete in the 2023 fall season.

On Saturday, Oct. 21, the Ashland University men’s and women’s cross country teams competed at the 2023 GMAC Cross Country Championship Meet, which was held at Malone University in Canton.  

On the men’s side, star sophomore Michael Snopik became the first men’s runner in the program to earn all GMAC honors, and his 25:51.6 time this year was over a minute faster than his showing last year, in which he went 27:00.7. Fellow sophomore Nate Slater also went a personal best time, placing 38th in 26:25.5.  

“It was pretty cool and special to be the first runner to win such honors, and we’re going to add some guys next year to it,” said Snopik. 

Snopik credited his training throughout the season to get him to where he is right now. 

“We trained all season when it comes to conference, and we tapered to peak at the right time, and that was a big part of it,” he said. 

For the women, senior McKenna Woodruff led the way placing 34th with a time of 24:07.95, fifth year Cassandra Ponzi finishing 39th in a 24:17.39, and junior Emilie Lemon coming in 56th place with a time of 24:47.80. 

Even though Woodruff believed that the team fell a little bit short of expectations, she still felt that the team performed well at the meet.  

“Overall as a team, we fell a little short of our goal, but we ran the race tactically well. We just got out a little slower than we would’ve liked. But overall, our placing was much higher than last year, and the highest place we’ve had in quite a few seasons with the girls team. So, that was something exciting and something to be proud of,” she said. 

The Ashland men finished eighth place out of 13 teams with 190 team points. Walsh took home the team conference title scoring 53 points, with Northwood coming in second and Cedarville in third with 80 and 83 points respectively.  

The women’s team also placed eighth out of 14 teams with 224 team points. Cedarville emerged victorious scoring 24 points, with Walsh finishing as runners up with 70 points and Findlay getting the bronze with 124 points. 

Next up, the teams will travel to Evansville, Ind. to compete in the NCAA Midwest Regional Meet, which will be held on Saturday, Nov. 4.  

Woodruff discussed how the team will be approaching this upcoming meet. 

“We’re looking to approach it with the same strategy by just getting out a little quicker and starting to make our moves a little sooner in the race,” she said.

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