LOUISVILLE, Ky. - Five members of the Duke men's cross country team ran personal bests to lead Duke to a fifth-place finish at NCAA Pre-Nationals on Saturday in Louisville, Ky. The Blue Devils went 35-4 on the day and 1-1 in the Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC), earning 287 points and had five runners finish in the top-100.
"We had a lot of good things happen today," said head coach Norm Ogilvie. "We had a really good, tight team performance. This puts us in a great position going into ACCs."
Mike Moverman led the Blue Devils with a personal-best time of 23:58.0 to finish in 39th place individually. Moverman, a native of Easton, Mass., broke his former personal best by over 40 seconds in the effort.
Entering the day, junior Brian Atkinson's personal best was 24:10.5 in the 8K. However the Melbourne Beach, Fla., native bested this time by eight seconds to finish in 48th place with a new personal record of 24:02.1.
Sophomore Shaun Thompson obliterated his previous personal best by over a minute to finish in 50th place, posting a time of 24:03.5.
Senior Dominick Robinson passed a Virginia Tech runner down the home stretch to help the Blue Devils edge the Hokies by one point in the team standings. Robinson, a native of Gillette, Wyo., ran a new personal best of 24:04.4 to finish in 52nd place.
Senior James Kostelnik clocked 24:28.7 to finish 98th, while sophomore Phil Fairleigh crossed the line at 24:53.6 to finish in 154th place and junior Lucas Talavan-Becker finished 182nd overall with a time of 25:06.9.
The Blue Devils, listed fifth in the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association Southeast Region rankings, edged four nationally-ranked squads - No. 9 Tulsa, No. 12 Villanova, No. 20 Georgetown, and No. 23 William & Mary. The fifth-place finish could have favorable implications for the team as they get closer to the NCAA Championship.
The Blue Devils are now 48-8 overall on the season, and 2-2 against teams from the ACC.
Duke is next slated to compete in the ACC Championship Oct. 27 in Blacksburg, Va.