March 5, 2021 - by
Noles Paced By Best Average, Finish Third

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – Junior Adriaan Wildschutt brought home his first career victory as a Seminole, as the Florida State men’s cross country team finished third in a very tight, top-heavy field at the FSU XC Last Chance meet.

On a picturesque Friday morning at the Apalachee Regional Park, the Seminoles had two runners in the top five and four in the top 15, completing the race with a total of 49 points ahead of Temple (117) and South Florida (153). RV Syracuse (31) took home the team title ahead of No. 17 Michigan (42).

“If today was a regional meet, we would be through to nationals after that performance,” FSU head coach Bob Braman said. “We ran really well. We didn’t leave a lot of meat on the bone,

“Our first, second and third runners were great. Our fourth and fifth runners ran very hard, but it wasn’t a perfect day for them. They gave it everything they had and that’s all I could have asked for.”

Wildschutt’s first place finish in this event is his second top-three finish in as many races this season since arriving in January. He also ran the eighth-fastest men’s 8K in APR history.

Senior Ahmed Muhumed placed in the top five, making a late charge at the end to come in at fourth overall with a personal-best 8k time of 23:50.0. He came back from as low as 18th to find his way back into the top 10 and stretched his way from seventh to fourth between the final two checkpoints.

Redshirt sophomore Jacob Holmes also had a career performance, placing 13th behind a personal  best 8k time of 24:17.2.

“That was a great race for Ahmed,” Braman added. “Aside from nationals in 2019, that was his best cross country race. And Jacob was on his best. He had a gutsy finish and picked a guy off at the end to try and get every point possible for the team.”

Redshirt freshman Sam Field (24:22.5) finished closely behind Holmes in 15th and junior Paul Stafford (24:23.6) finished alongside him at 16th.

Wildschutt, Muhamed, Holmes, Field and Stafford averaged 24:04, which is the fastest average for the Noles at the Apalachee Regional Park in school history.

Redshirt junior Caleb Pottorff (24:50.5) placed 22nd and redshirt freshman Gabriel Curtis (25:05.2) finished 24th. Freshman Zach Leachman (25:20.2) and Anderson Denton (25:23.9) placed side-by-side in 28th and 30th, while redshirt freshman Zachary Cloud (26:21.6) finished in 38th to round out the men’s group for the Seminoles.

“We were really flat at (ACC) indoors last week,” Braman said.  “All of us were concerned about how tired and flat we were there, I told them that it was my fault and that we trained too hard. But we rebounded really well.”

Members of the No. 18 Florida State women’s team ran unattached in the 6K race.

The individual runners for the Seminoles were led by freshman Caitlin Wilkey for the second straight meet, who finished in 11th overall with a time of 22:02.4.

Freshman Rebecca Bergnes was right behind Wilkey, finishing 12th with a time of 22:28.6. This was Bergnes’ best time running the 6k since competing in the Mountain Dew Invitational on Sept. 18 earlier this season.

Freshman Kate Tugman (22:44.0) was the third Seminole to finish with a sub-23 minute time at 14th, while sophomore Abby Schrobilgen (23:03.0) finished alongside Tugman at 15th. Freshman Quinn Wilson rounded out the top 20 for the Noles placing 17th , clocking in at 23:32.5.

Freshman Melanie Castro (23:55.9) finished in 22nd and junior Alondra Reyna-Lopez (24:14.7) followed in 25th. Sophomore Rachel Johnson (24:31.5) and junior Kaia Stevenson (24:58.1) placed back-to-back at 29th and 30th.

“The weather was phenomenal and they took advantage of it today,” FSU head coach Kelly Phillips said. “Many seasonal and personal bests today. It’s really fun to watch how competitive they all were for the last cross country meet of the year. Now, we’re excited to get the outdoor season started.”

Florida State will await its postseason fate, as the NCAA Cross Country selection show airs on March 7 at 1 p.m. The NCAA Championships will be held on March 15 in Stillwater, Okla.

For more information on Florida State cross country, follow Twitter @FSU_Track and Instagram @FSU_Track.

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