The University of Miami cross country team concluded its regular season with an exceptional performance at the FSU XC Invitational in Tallahassee, Florida, on Friday morning.
Sophomore Daphnee Lavassas won the women’s 5K by re-breaking her own school record with a time of 17:10.9, which was 13 seconds faster than the previous record she set earlier in the season.
“The win was great for Daphnee, but I believe she has a lot left in the tank,” coach Cody Halsey said in a Miami Athletics release. “She was very patient and stayed under control for the entirety of the race. It’s exciting to think what she can do in three weeks.”
Lavassas was not the only great performer for the women’s team. Sophomore Natalie Varela, the second-place finisher for Miami, came in eighth place (17:38.6) and fellow sophomore Elle Mezzio finished right behind her in ninth (17:41.5). Finally, rounding out the women’s top-15 was Bianca Banato, who finished 12th (17:50.7).
The women’s team finished second out of 30 competing teams, behind only LSU, and the men placed within the top 10 as six Hurricanes finished under 26 minutes in the 8K. Leading the men’s team was Austen Cannon, who placed sixth with a time of 24:32.6, a personal record.
“Today was a lot of fun,” Halsey said. “It’s so satisfying to see their hard work finally start coming to fruition. It’s rare for an entire group to have a great race on the same day, but all 18 of these men and women ran a personal best today. Every single one of them. That’s amazing and a testament to their buy in as well as their trust in each other. They work incredibly hard and today we saw it start to pay off.”
The Hurricanes will take the next few weeks to prepare for the 2022 Cross Country ACC Championships on Oct. 28. The Championships will be held in Earlysville, Virginia, at Panorama Farms.