The Ole harriers took this motto to heart as they ran in the MIAC Conference cross-country meet on Saturday at Como Park Golf Course in St. Paul.
Running on Nov. 1, the mens cross-country team began the championship season by finishing in third place, in a tightly contested meet. St. Thomas was crowned champion for the third time in four years, with a score of 42 points.The Knights from Carleton, the defending champion was unable to defend its title but finished a close second.
There are a number of explanations for why the Ole men were able to pull things together for a very solid race.
The race was the Oles first for the season in which nearly everyone who ran was relatively healthy.
Many of the men were ready to prove that they still were a team to watch out for.
"We really were kind of counted out as a team and wanted to show we were a force to be reckoned with," Sam Hauck 06 said, "and I think we did."
While expected to place close to where they did, the Oles were able to finish only 10 points behind Carleton, 56 66, 34 points ahead of fourth place Macalester, who scored 100 points.
"Its always nice to be closer to second than fourth," Thornton said. "We should have been third, but not as solid a third as we were. We had some breakthrough performances."
Kelly Fulton 05 once again led the Oles, blazing across the 8k course in 25:52 to finish in third place. Hauck finished second for the Oles and fifth overall with a time of 26:04.
Jesse Horst 06 closed out the scoring places for the Ole men by finishing in 31st place. The Oles had a number of standout performances on Saturday.
"Jesse Horst left his mark at conference yesterday," Hauck exclaimed.
For many members of the team the race was a large confidence boost.
"I thought the top seven came to race," Peder Arneson 04 said. "It gave me confidence that there is a lot to improve on in the coming weeks."
The Ole harriers will have two weeks to train and taper until the Regional Meet in Grinnell, IA that will decide National qualifying teams and individuals.
The race will provide an even stiffer test for the Oles, for they most likely will need to defeat both St. Thomas and Carleton to have a chance at making it to Nationals.
"Were creeping up on Carleton, which was good. Our top 3 runners are going to have to run equally as well, and well need our four and five runners to run better.
The Region meet is going to be a heck of a race." Thornton commented.
The race will include five of the top seventeen Division III teams in the nation, including 8th ranked Nebraska Wesleyan and 10th ranked Wartburg.