2002 men's cross country season recap
There's no doubt about it. The 2002 menâ€TMs cross country team was the most talented squad Coach Graeme Badger has ever assembled at the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs.
It was the perfect mix of youth and leadership, and the individual achievements of each runner on the team were well known.
Unfortunately, it does not take much to come up short when it counts the most, and the menâ€TMs team missed a birth to the Division-II Cross Country National Championships by a mere five points. Despite the disappointment he felt for his teammates, freshmen Levi Brathall went on to the national meet by qualifying as an individual at the regional meet where he took 16th.
At nationals, Brathall did not do as well as he expected, but nonetheless ended a great season on a high note in Ashland, Ohio, the site of the national meet. During the regular season, Brathall was named Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference Runner of the Week. Receiving this honor as a freshman is astonishing, given the caliber of runners in this conference, which produced, once again, the national champions menâ€TMs team from Western State College.
The accolades did not go solely to Brathall, though. The team, which featured two seniors, was ranked as high as 16th in the nation at one point during the season. Garrett Edwards was one of the seniors on the team. Edwards accomplished something that is rare for any athlete at this university â€" he competed four years as a member of the cross country and track team. Edwardsâ€TM commitment to the program will be missed greatly.
Adolfo Carrillo was the teamâ€TMs other senior. Carrillo was a solid performer for the team throughout the season, and was amongst the teamâ€TMs top seven runners at every meet.
The teamâ€TMs resume included a first place finish at the Colorado College Invitational, where the Mountain Lions represented 12 of the top 20 finishers. In there first meet of the season the team traveled to Wyoming, and took second place ahead of two Division-I schools.
With a solid core of athletes returning to the team for next yearâ€TMs season, the 2003 menâ€TMs cross country team promises to be the best yet, and will settle for nothing less than a trip to the national meet in North Carolina.
UCCS Players/Staff Featured