STORRS, Conn. – Coming off a successful season in which it finished as the conference runner-up, the UConn men’s cross country team is set to open its fourth year of competition in the American Athletic Conference when it heads to Amherst, Mass. to participate in the 2016 Minuteman Invitational on Saturday, Sept. 10. Action at the UMass XC Course is set to begin at 11:30 a.m.
Results will be available shortly after the conclusion of the race at TFRRS.org. Fans can check back with uconnhuskies.com on Saturday evening for a complete race recap.
Husky head coach Greg Roy has announced that upperclassmen Mike O’Donnell and Michael McGonnigle will serve as co-captains for the 2016 campaign. O’Donnell, who also held captain responsibilities a season ago, was the program’s top finisher at the 2015 American championship in Greenville, N.C. last November, crossing the finish line in sixth overall. A t McGonnigle played an integral role on the Huskies’ squad in 2014, taking 13th individually in The American championship in Tulsa. Both captains are All-Conference selections with McGonnigle returning after a redshirt season in 2015.
"I'm excited to begin our 2016 season," said Roy. "We have great leadership from our captains, both of who are All-Conference performers. Additionally, we'll be looking for steeplechase scorers Kyle Barber and Wyatt Million to provide a spark for our team, as well as looking for strong performances from Aidian Fiol, Parker Timmerman and Kyle Brackman, who all have experience competing at the conference and NCAA level. We're coming off a strong conference performance last season and looking to get the season started on the right note against a tough field."
To view the Huskies’ entire 19-man roster, which features eight freshmen, please CLICK HERE.
Connecticut returns to the Minuteman Invitational for the second-straight season after claiming the meet title in 2015. The Huskies posted a meet-best 53 points, edging out Amherst (59) and Maine (86) for the top spot. As a team, UConn averaged a 19:53 time in the 6K race, which was .01 seconds better than the Amherst average finish.
Six days later, the Huskies return to competition at the UB Stampede, hosted by Buffalo, on Sept. 16 before making their first appearance at the New England Championships (Oct. 8) since the 2013 campaign.
The Huskies’ final tune-up prior to the conference meet comes on Oct. 14 when the squad returns to Warwick, R.I. to take part in the 2016 Rothenburg Run. UConn captured the meet title in 2015, winning the meet with 30 points, and topping two of the top-15 teams in the USTFCCCA’s Northeast Region in Dartmouth (No. 4) and Brown (No. 11). The Huskies’ average finish time in the 8K race was 25:15, which was 20 seconds faster than the nearest competitor.
The Huskies, which posted their best conference meet finish since 1990 a season ago, will compete at the 2016 American Athletic Conference championship on Oct. 29 in Cincinnati.
NCAA action begins on Nov. 11 when the squad hits the road to Bronx, N.Y. for the Northeast Qualifier.