CONWAY, S.C. - The Coastal Carolina University men’s cross country team kicks off the 2008 season August 29, at the Gamecock Invitational in Columbia, S.C. Race time is set for 6:30 p.m.
The Chanticleers were tabbed to finish fourth in the 2008 Big South Preseaosn Poll. Coastal Carolina is stocked with veterans, returning eight runners from last year, including four juniors that will provide leadership for this young group. The experienced field welcomes only one newcome and hopes to return to Big South Championship form, after a sixth place showing last year.
The Chants were tripped up during preseason training when it became known that two top runners would be out of the field for the opening race. Junior Max Hacker (Hazelwood, Mo./Hazelwood West) ran 25:15.7, a career best in the 8k at the NCAA Pre-Nationals in 2007, but will sit out a few weeks after injuring his knee during a summer workout. John Heron (Manlius, N.Y./Fayetteville-Manlius) finished 24th at the Big South Conference Championship last season, but is sidelined with a foot injury, with no timetable on his return.
Head coach Jeff Jacobs will have five Chanticleers in the line up making their 2008 season debuts. Junior Jamie McCarthy (Riverstick, Ireland/North Monastery) is slated to serve a leading role this season after posting a time of 26:43.9, to place 11th at the Big South Cross Country Championships. McCarthy knocked off 55 seconds from his previous season best when he recorded a time of 25:10.7 at the NCAA Pre-Nationals.
Sophomores Kevin Davis (Horsham, Pa./Hatboro Horrsham) and David Mead (Columbia, S.C./Ridgeview) will aim to improve their freshman times this fall. Davis’ best showing came at the Brooks Paul Short Run, where he ran a season best 27:05, while Mead competed in the Junior Varsity race and finished with a time of 28:56.
Rob Delviscio (Morton, Pa./Ridley) joined the Chanticleers for the 2008 outdoor track and field season, where he ran a personal best of 10:20.59 in the 3000m steeplechase at the Coastal Carolina Invitational. Delviscio and newcomer Kyle Kling (Louisville, Ohio/Louisville) will both make their Chanticleers debut in Columbia, S.C. Kling was 11th at the Ohio Cross Country State meet with a time of 15:51 (5k), and is expected to make an immediate impact for the Chants this year.