ANNAPOLIS, Md. - UMBC cross country squads placed fourth against very strong fields at Navy on Saturday. The men competed in the Navy Invitational, while the women were a part of the Salty Dog Invitational. Both of head coach Matt Gittermann's squads were competing for the second time in the span of eight days.
On the men's side, UMBC's top five runners all crossed the line within 30 seconds of one another. Sophomore Hassan Omar (Frederick, Md./Thomas Johnson) paced the Retrievers, finishing 11th in the field and completing the 8k run in 24:54.90. Senior Jake Albino (Hampton, N.Y./Minisink Valley) also placed in the top 20, earning 17th position, in a time of 25:07.39.
The next three Retrievers finished back-to-back-to-back, led by junior Eric Schuler (Columbia, Md./Reservoir). Schuler, who paced UMBC in its victory at the America East Pre-Conference Meet on Sept. 7, crossed in 20th position in a time of 25:11.81. Senior Andrew Smith (Chadds Ford, Pa./Garnet Valley) placed 21st in a time of 25:18.89, and sophomore Redatu Semeon (Waldorf, Md./Thomas Stone) finished in 22nd position at 25:24.27.
National power Georgetown placed five runners in the top eight and won the meet with 26 points. Host Navy placed second with 37 points, followed by American (83), UMBC (91), Howard (183), George Washington (186), Loyola (Md.) (194), Catholic (241) and Bowie State (252).
Navy sophomore Stephen Schroeder won the meet in a time of 23:55.69.
On the women's side, UMBC was led by Nicole Dawson (Jessup, Md./Hammond), who earned a top-20 finish by placing 16th in the Salty Dog Invitational. The sophomore completed the 6k event in a time of 21:58.88. Dawson just edged Retriever senior Cody Mezebish (Westminster, Md./South Carroll ), who finished 18th at 22:00.77.
Freshman Sarah Zielinski (Boonsboro, Md./Boonsboro) also earned a top-20 position, crossing in 20th place in a time of 22:11.12. Junior Sarah Daly (Lake Orion, Mich./Lake Orion) earned the 25 th position overall (22:20.64), while junior Julie Gessler (Ellicott City, Md./Institute of Notre Dame) was two spots behind (22:33.19).
Host Navy (38 points) edged Maryland (49) and American (58) for the title. UMBC placed fourth with 106 points, ahead of Loyola (Md.) (113), George Washington (171) and Howard (219).
Navy's Annie-Norah Beveridge won the event in a time of 20:46.23.
Both squads return to action on Saturday, Oct. 5 when they compete at the Paul Short Invitational in Bethlehem, Pa.