VERMILION, ALTA., (Oct. 27, 2018) — Make it three in a row for the SAIT Trojans men's cross-country running team.
The Trojans earned four of the top seven spots at the Alberta Colleges Athletic Conference (ACAC) to earn their third consecutive men's team title at the Conference Championships hosted by Lakeland College Saturday afternoon in Vermilion, Alta.
"We are so very proud of guys," said Trojans co-head coach Bre MacEachern. "They have set themselves up for success. All six of them are running really well right now. I can't wait to see what we do at Nationals."
The top-three finish for the Trojans men's team automatically qualifies them to take part in the Canadian Collegiate Athletic Association (CCAA) National Championship – hosted by Seneca College just outside of Toronto on Nov. 10.
Leading the way for the Trojans was Matthew Travaglini (4th year, London, Ont., Geomatics Engineering Technology), who for the second straight year, captured the men's individual title by finishing the 8-kilometre loop in a time of 25:56 (mins:sec).
Like last year, Travaglini did not lose a single race he entered this season.
"Matt is just so strong," MacEachern said. "In every single race, he's mentally strong, physically strong, so there was no doubt there was going to take it today."
Helping Travaglini was the trio of Jacques Saayman (3rd year, Fort McMurray, Alta., Bachelor of Business Administration), Daryl Ross (3rd year, Calgary, Business Administration) and Brant Lauweryssen (2nd year, Calgary, Business Administration).
They finished in fourth, fifth, and seventh spots, respectively in a show of dominance by the Trojans.
On the women's side, Emilie Mann (2nd year, Fernie, BC, Respiratory Therapy) placed second overall in the 6km race, finishing in a time of 24:18. Her finish also guarantees a spot for her in Toronto.
"Emilie went out strong, and led for most of the race, but (Sofia Nowicki from Lethbridge College) was able to take it from her in the last few kilometres," explained MacEachern. "Emilie ran a really gutsy race, and we could not be happier for the result she had."
Teammate Ann Danard had an impressive showing as well, placing ninth in 26:16.
However, the women's team as a whole finished just four points out of a spot on the podium, which was heartbreaking for the squad, said MacEachern.
"We knew it was going to be close, but unfortunately it didn't work out," she stated. "One thing that we tell our athletes is to make sure they don't have any regrets at the end of the day, and none of them do. They all raced as hard as they could."