By Keaton Robbins
The Humber women’s and men’s cross country teams have come away from Sault Ste. Marie as OCAA gold and silver medalists.
The gold-winning women’s team was led by Darian Limb, who claimed individual bronze for Humber.
On the men’s side, the strong duo of Nathaniel Green (finishing sixth) and Andrew Cruickshank (seventh) helped the men capture silver.
Amy Walcott, a second year runner with the women’s team, told Humber News it was one of the squad’s best runs despite the competition being a lot stronger this year.
“Almost everyone on the team got personal bests,” Walcott, the second year fitness and health student, told Humber News. “Last year I placed seventh, with a time of just under 20 minutes, this year I placed 17th with about the same time.”
It wasn’t all good news for the Hawks over the weekend because they’ll be without teammate Rose Martin for nationals.
Martin was taken to hospital in Sault Ste. Marie after collapsing at the finish line.
Walcott said Martin was running with an injury (which the team has declined to identify) for the whole race, and pushing through the pain ended up being too much for her.
Darren Mancini, a third year runner on the men’s side, told Humber News the team is praying for Martin while she’s still recovering in the hospital in Sault Ste. Marie.
“She told me she was blanking out during the race, I probably would have just stopped and said that’s the end of my race,” Mancini said.
The other drama that unfolded up north was the neck and neck finish for third place that involved Humber’s Darian Limb.
“They had to review the video seven times,” Mancini, the third year sports management student, said. “It got reviewed because the Seneca coaches wanted to make sure there wasn’t any elbowing.”
Men’s captain Jesse Bruce, who ran a personal best time of 27:13 for the men’s eight kilometre contest, told Humber News the course itself was extremely challenging.
“It was very uneven and bumpy, and covered with a lot of leaves,” Bruce, the third year business management student, said. “We spent a lot of time keeping an eye out for where we were going cause it was covered with leaves and hills.”
Bruce agreed with Walcott and said the level of the competition picked up this year.
“Last year, my time puts me at top seven, but it’s tough because there were a lot of runners we didn’t know about there,” Bruce said.
With the silver at provincials, Bruce said the goal has to be to finish at nationals with a medal.
“We’ve got three weeks to train to get ready for Quebec,” Bruce said. “Last year when they hosted university nationals at that course, it was snowing, so it should be interesting.”
CCAA Nationals go Nov. 9 and 10 at Michel Chartrand Park in Longueil, Quebec.