The men’s and women’s cross-country teams finished their last weekend of competition with a pair of first-place finishes. 

Lipscomb bested 32 men’s teams and 33 women’s teams at the Arturo Barrios Invite hosted by Texas A&M in College Station, Texas. The teams also sent runners to the UAB Blazer Classic in Birmingham, Alabama where the men finished 5th and the women finished 10th. Freshman men’s runner Ben Butcher competed in Birmingham and was Lipscomb’s second-highest finisher, coming in 26th place with a time of 25:35:05. 

“The atmosphere is really positive right now.” Butcher said. “I think the past few weeks when we saw what the top guys at Texas A&M were capable of doing, we all thought ‘wow, we are legit and can compete with the top teams in the country and make a name for ourselves.’”

Both Lipscomb teams seem to be trending in the right direction with the ASUN Championship next up. Along with the talent on both rosters, Butcher believes having a normal fall season has helped both teams as well. Last year, COVID-19 forced the season to be condensed and rescheduled for winter 2021. 

“There is a strong appreciation for having more normalcy.” Butcher said. “My teammates have talked about last year and how hard it was to have cross country and indoor track basically at the same time. This year having that space to focus on cross country, everyone has felt more relaxed and prepared for the season.”

Normalcy and their recent success are two things the Bisons can take with them into the ASUN Championship. The team is carrying a lot of confidence and has high expectations for post-season competition.

“Our team’s message is that we’re ready and capable of winning the conference meet. We have big goals such as making conference this year. Conference is just another checkpoint to show what we’re capable of. And to prove that we belong.”

The men’s ASUN Championship will be at 6:40 am October 30 in Orlando, Florida, and the women will follow at 7:15 am.

Photo courtesy of Lipscomb Athletics

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