The Minnesota men’s cross country team opened their 2007 season in impressive fashion by capturing the title in the BYU Autumn Classic on Saturday in Provo, Utah. Golden Gopher All-American Chris Rombough kicked off his junior season with medalist honors, covering the 4-mile course in a time of 19 minutes, 16.5 seconds.
The Gophers landed five finishers in the top 10 to tally a winning team score of 26 points. BYU, annually a national power, was second with 30. Utah Valley was third with 101.
“I’m excited about how we performed today,” said Golden Gopher head coach Steve Plasencia. “We have come out to this meet several times and we are finally leaving with a win over BYU.”
Gopher freshman Hassan Mead made his collegiate debut and finished third with a time of 19:31.5. Other Gophers in the top 12 were Matt Barrett (19:47.1) in fifth, Forrest Tahdooahnippah (19:48.9) in sixth and Mike Torchia (19:59.2) in 11th.
Other Gopher finishers were Mike McFarland (20:02.4) in 13th, Ben Puhl (20:09.8) in 14th, Rick Furseth (20:28.3) in 18th, Ben Kampf (20:41.2) in 21st and Eddie Kibira (20:44.9) in 22nd.
The Gophers are idle until they host the Roy Griak Invitational on Saturday, Sept. 29.