Buffalo, NY — McMaster could not have asked for more from their final tune up race of 2016.
Travelling to Buffalo for the second time, the Marauders men coasted to the team title, while the women narrowly missed the overall championship at the Canisius Alumni Classic Saturday (Oct. 15).
The race was Mac’s final competition before the Ontario University Athletics championships at the University of Toronto Sunday, Oct. 30.
On the men’s side, Jeff Tweedle continued his remarkable final season as a Marauder, finishing fourth overall in the 8km race to provide Mac’s low post with a time of 24:49.7. Saturday marked Tweedle’s second race of the season, and he and fellow senior Connor Darlington continue to raise the bar for one another.
Just two spots behind his teammate, Darlington scored second for McMaster with a time of 25:21.4, and has scored for Mac in each of the team’s three races to date. Alongside him, Paul Rochus showed a return to form in scoring third and placing seventh, finishing the course in 25:32.5.
Not to be forgotten among Mac’s veteran-laden scoring group, Gabe Ghiglione provided Mac’s fourth score in a time of 25:37, returning to fitness after an illness limited his performance at the team’s last competition in London.
As he has all season, Nick Kondrat scored for McMaster on Saturday, rounding out the top five by finishing 14th in a time of 25:51.6. Behind him, a tight pack of Marauders finished strongly, including Luke Charbonneau (17th), Josh and Christian MacGillivray (18th and 19th) and Matt Napier (22nd).
Mac’s women were again led by the trio of veterans Emily Nowak and Maddie Benjamin and first-year Marauder Rachel Faulds on Saturday. Nowak and Benjamin finished second and third overall, with just under three seconds separating them.
Having led the Marauders at each of their three appearances this season, Nowak has stamped her place as the team’s leader heading into the OUA Championships, while Benjamin continues to hold to the pace of her teammate, and stands as a strong second score.
Faulds was not far behind, putting down a time of 18:32.3 over the 5km course to finish fifth overall and score third for Mac. The repatriated runner, who spent her first season in the NCAA, has impressed throughout her debut season for McMaster, scoring in all three of the team’s events to date.
Closing out the scorers for McMaster, Erin Mawhinney (17th) and Maxine Gravina (21st) spearheaded a pack of Marauders that included second-year runners Alison Head (22nd), Soren Meeuwisse (23rd) and Megan Black (24th).