The Daily Tar Heel

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Thursday February 25th

North Carolina cross country has mixed showing at Penn State National XC Open

<p>UNC first-year cross country runner Enyaeva Michelin. Photo courtesy of UNC athletic department.</p>
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UNC first-year cross country runner Enyaeva Michelin. Photo courtesy of UNC athletic department.

The North Carolina cross country team competed in the Penn State National Cross Country Open on Friday. 

The men's side finished in sixth place and the women's team finished in 19th place.

What happened?

Coming off of a solid showing in Boston, the men’s team looked for a strong display in the event at State College, Pa. 

The top finisher for the Tar Heels was Jeremy Brown. The junior ran with a time of 25:44, good for 37th place. His teammates came close behind him, with all six finishing within a minute after Brown. Five of the six runners finished in the top 100, with redshirt sophomore Alex Milligan earning 43rd place.

The women, who finished 14th in Boston looked to improve on that showing. The squad finished in 19th place on Friday afternoon. The top effort came from first-year Enyaeva Michelin, who finished 14th with a time of 21:01. No other UNC runner finished in the top 100 on the women's side.

When was it decided?

The men's team did not have any runners finish in the top 30 and it was clear early on UNC would not win the event. 

On the women's side, the race was decided early on with Michelin the only runner to finish in the top 100.

Why does it matter?

The race marks the third top-10 finish in as many events from the men's team this season. The team defeated Virginia Tech, an ACC rival, in this race.

Head coach Andrea Grove-McDonough was encouraged by the performance from the women's team, although the squad had finished second and 14th in the races predating Friday's event.

Who stood out?

Michelin continued to show why she was a highly-touted recruit with a 14th-place finish on Friday. The Evanston, Ill. native also finished in fifth in an event this season. 

Her coach praised the young runner after the race.

"A freshman who behaves like an upperclassman in terms of attitude and focus," Grove-McDonough said. "She brings a certain swag to the program."

Where do they play next?

The cross country team competes in the ACC Championships on Oct. 26. The event is held in Boston, Mass., and begins at 9 a.m. that morning.


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