ANNAPOLIS, Md. – The Navy men’s cross country team showcased their prowess on Saturday morning, claiming all top five spots and eight out of the top 10 in the Navy Invitational held at the USNA Cross Country Course. Dominating the 4.9-mile race, the Midshipmen earned a team-low score of 15 points, securing a decisive victory.

In the Open 5K race, the Midshipmen continued their strong performance. Six Navy runners made it to the top 10, led by individual winner Owen Ahten.

Credit: U.S. Naval Academy

Head Coach Aaron Lanzel expressed his satisfaction: “I’m very pleased with both races today. Our 5k runners were wise early in the race and got some good experience in a college race on our course. Owen [Ahten] made an even effort through the middle, making it tough on the field.” Lanzel added, “In the varsity race, Sam [Keeny], with our top 5, could stay in control as the temperatures soared. They decided when they wanted to leave the rest of the pack and showed they were well prepared for the season ahead.”

Murphy Smith and Alexander Kirkland both finished with a time of 25:04.30, securing first- and second-place points, respectively. Team captain Sam Keeny was a hair behind, clocking in at 25:04.31 to claim third place. Jackson Nguyen (25:04.40) and Justin Mumford (25:08.81) rounded out the top five. Ben Countiss (25:15.12) and Matthew Newell (25:17.37) also contributed to the Navy’s strong showing, finishing in seventh and ninth places, respectively. Luke Nester finished in tenth place with a time of 25:20.11.

Six of the last 10 Navy runners finished within the top 25. These included Carson Sloat (25:26.78) in 14th place, Sam Moultrie (25:33.94) and Joe Reimann (25:44.65) in 16th and 17th places, Sean Miller (25:57.45) in 20th, Griffin House (26:15.05) and Nico Valdivieso (26:25.18) in 24th and 25th places.

Completing the list of Navy participants were Evan Prince (26:43.57 – 32nd), Robbie Naberhaus (27:03.21 – 41st), Garrett Baublitz (27:09.63 – 42nd), and Jack Lange (27:57.64 – 56th).

The Midshipmen team will now enjoy a brief respite before their next race at the Panorama Farms Invitational on Saturday, Sept. 23, hosted by the University of Virginia in Charlottesville, Va.

David M. Higgins II is an award-winning journalist passionate about uncovering the truth and telling compelling stories. Born in Baltimore and raised in Southern Maryland, he has lived in several East...

Leave a comment

Leave a Reply