The Villanova men entered today's Chile Pepper Cross Country Festival at the University of Arkansas' home course ranked # 27 in the country, but put a real scare into the #8-ranked hosts, 31-44. Villanova was again led by super freshman Patrick Tiernan, who came 4th overall in 24:27.0 over the 8K course. He was joined in the top 10 by sophomore Jordy Williamsz, who was 10 seconds behind. Their compatriot Sam McEntee came 13th, 17 seconds behind Williamsz. Overall, Villanova had 5 finishers in the top 20 individuals, with a tight 1-5 split of 39 seconds. The race was won by defending NCAA champion Kennedy Kithuka of Texas Tech, who won by almost 7 seconds over Arkansas' Kemoy Campbell, 17th at last year's NCAA cross country national meet.
The Villanova men should gain some confidence from this performance and are likely to move up a bit in the national poll. Alex Tully, an Arkansas native, made his season debut for Villanova after missing the first two meets with minor injuries. If he rounds into competitive fitness, Villanova could be a dangerous team in the Mid-Atlantic region. Brian Basili, who finished 15th, seems to have had no fitness hiccup from his severe arm injury during outdoor season. Rob Denault, held out with a minor niggle last week from the Main Line Invitational, returned to competition was was 19th in 25:06.1. Harry Warnick has insinuated himself further into the top-7 squad with a nice 25:09.5 run, good for 21st overall.
Villanova Results (overall finish)
4. Patrick Tiernan 24:27.0 8. Jordy Williamsz 24:37.8 13. Sam McEntee 24:54.3 15. Brian Basili 25:02.1 19. Rob Denault 25:06.1 21. Harry Warnick 25:09.5 30. Alex Tully 25:26.0 34. Kevin Corbusier 25:29.4 126. Dusty Solis 26:52.5
The complete results of the race are HERE.