XC Preview: Bucs hit the road for the Paul Short Invitational this weekend

XC Preview: Bucs hit the road for the Paul Short Invitational this weekend

CHARLESTON, S.C. - Charleston Southern returns to the road this weekend after a nearly month-long hiatus from the course as the men's and women's cross country teams take on the field at the Paul Short Invitational. The men will run the eight-kilometer course at 11 a.m., while the women will take on the field for the six-kilometer race at 1 p.m.

45th Paul Short Invitational Race Day Central

THE FIELD
Approximately 6,000 athletes from nearly 450 colleges and high schools are slated to compete on the Goodman Campus Cross Country Course at the 45th annual Paul Short Run presented by ASICS. The day-long event includes 14 total races (six college, six high school, and two open races).

TIME
Men's 8K – 11 a.m.
Women's 6K – 1 p.m.

ADMISSION
Admission: Free
Parking: $5 per car

For the safety of all fans and participants, smoking and alcoholic beverages will not be permitted near the racing area.

RESULTS
All race results will be uploaded throughout the day as they become official on PaulShortXCRun.com. At the conclusion of all events, LehighSports.com will provide a complete recap of the day's races.

PROGRAMS
Official programs for the 2018 Paul Short Run will be available exclusively online. Physical copies will not be available for sale. The 2018 Paul Short Program can be accessed on any mobile device. An archive of past year's programs is available here.

MEET PREVIEW
It has been four weeks since Charleston Southern last took on an opponent as a team. The Bucs last took on the field at the Buccaneer Open hosted at the CSU Cross Country Course on the campus of CSU. The Bucs took both team titles on September 1 behind strong finishes on both sides.

Since then, the Bucs second race on September 15 – the Winthrop Invitational – was postponed due to Hurricane Florence. CSU did have three runners compete individually at the Commodore Classic at Vanderbilt. Matt Inman and Andrew Akright both recorded strong finishes in the men's eight-kilometer race at Percy Warner Park, while freshman Caroline Inman added a good result in her second collegiate race.

The Bucs will look to continue their fall preparations for the 2018 Big South Championships hosted at High Point University on October 26. The Paul Short Invitational is one of three final races the team has prior to the conference championships.

CSU will look to its veteran leadership on the men's side paced by juniors Jeryck Wilson and Trevor Dominy, as well as sophomore Jaymee Domoney. Wilson led three Bucs in the top five at his last race. The Athens, Ga. native is looking to build off an All-Conference season last year and continue to pace the Bucs this weekend.

On the women's side, Caroline Inman was CSU's top finisher at the Buccaneer Open. The freshman leads a youthful resurgence for the squad with three of the top five finishers in the team's opening race making their collegiate debuts. Inman, Makennah Mills, and Zanelle Willemse combined with juniors Bethany Thornhill and Rebecca Cadet to lead the Bucs to the win in the season-opening event.

Overall, it will be a tough race for the Buccaneers this weekend. The 2018 edition of the Paul Short Run will feature a talented field of schools and runners from across the country and all three NCAA Divisions. The 2018 running of Paul Short features a deep and talented field from across the nation and all three NCAA divisions.

For the men's Gold Race, those include Mid-Atlantic ranked schools such as Penn, Saint Joseph's, Lehigh, La Salle, and American. Also competing is national ranked Division III Christopher Newport (27), Carnegie Mellon (12), Amherst (3).

On the women's side, one nationally ranked Division I program will compete in the Gold Race with Utah State (14) the lone nationally ranked squad along with regionally ranked Penn, Richmond, Lehigh, Vermont, New Hampshire, Georgia, and Columbia to name a few.

At least one school from all five power conferences will be represented at Paul Short this year including the Southeastern Conference (Georgia.), Big 10 (Rutgers, Maryland), Atlantic Coast (Georgia Tech, Wake Forest, Virginia Tech), the Pac 12 (Arizona) and the Big 12 (West Virginia). Utah State from the Mountain West will be on hand as well, plus two schools from Canada.

THE COURSE
The current (new) course is the second version of the Lehigh cross country course at Goodman Campus and has existed in its current layout since 1999. The original course was constructed in 1968 and designed by Lehigh's Hall of Fame track and cross country coach, John Covert. The original course accommodated 5K, 8K, and 10K races had a starting area roughly located at the present-day soccer field at the Ulrich Sports Complex. The opening of the current course in 1999 coincided with the construction of the Ulrich Sports Complex and College Drive, which runs through part of the land that contained Covert's original course.

UP NEXT
Charleston Southern returns to the Lowcountry the following weekend on October 6 for the Citadel/CofC Invite hosted on Johns Island.

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