Having missed his first cross country season due to injury, Lyle Tolli has quickly burst onto the Patriot League running scene as a sophomore, turning in yet another great performance last weekend at the UMass Team Meet. Tolli finished the six-mile course with a third-place time of 25:07, only nine seconds behind gold medalist Will Sanders of UConn. Tolli ran a tough race by taking on the role of pace-setter in the middle parts and responding to numerous surges from other runners and the chasing pack.
“Lyle gained a lot of experience in this race,” Head Coach Art McKinnon said. “It’s a learning process, knowing when to make moves and when not to.”
First-year revelation Ed Sheridan turned in yet another stellar performance, finishing 16th with a time of 25:56, joining the exclusive and very short list of Colgate first-year runners to break 26 minutes for six miles. Rounding out the top three for Colgate was junior Emmett Weatherford, who crossed the line with a 24th-place time of 26:09, a personal-best.
“Coach Sanders and I are very excited about how the team ran against some solid teams in UMass, Maine, Connecticut and Vermont,” McKinnon said. “The guys executed the plans I had laid out for them extremely well.”
McKinnon’s plans included staying in control in the first miles of the race and running as close to even splits as possible. Colgate did this exceptionally well, including first-year Grant Stauffer and sophomore Bryan Kretschmer. The two harriers completed the scoring five and placed 25th and 30th respectively.
“I didn’t want the team to be too aggressive at the beginning of the race, especially having a meet this weekend,” McKinnon said. “I wanted to make sure we could bounce back at the Buffalo Invitational. There, I’m looking for the team to be a little more aggressive.”
The Buffalo Invitational will be held on September 22nd and should come down to a showdown between Colgate and Buffalo.
“At this stage, the team is progressing faster and exceeding all of my expectations,” McKinnon noted, “This weekend should be an ideal meet for us and a big weekend to see how our competition in the Patriot League does.”