Marquette Wire

Runners line up for C-USA meet

tom.blair@marquette.edu

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As the only nationally ranked team competing, and the meet champions for the past three years, the 21st ranked women will be considered the favorites. Despite that, head coach Dave Uhrich hesitated to call first place a lock for his team.

“We’re certainly the favorites, but the other teams are not just going to hand us the championship,” Uhrich said. “There are certainly some other good teams in the conference, and we’ll have to run well if we want to win it again.”

Uhrich felt there is a very good chance that a Marquette runner could take first place individually, especially his top three runners, sophomore Jodi Jakubek, senior Brianna Dahm and freshman Heidi Lindeman.

“Brianna and Heidi have really come on the last couple weeks,” Uhrich said. “I think everything’s clicking for them. I think they’re both going to have their best race of the season. And Jodi’s jut been getting consistently stronger with each week as well.”

Uhrich said that in preparing his team for this weekend, his goal was to avoid crossing the line from confidence to arrogance.

“They know they’re the favorites, and I want them to be confident, but not overconfident,” Uhrich said. “I think if they do the things that they’ve been doing all year, they should have a good chance to win it.”

He said that the string of three straight championships will not affect how he or his team will look at the meet.

“Each year is its own year,” he said. “Each year we’re trying to win it and do the best that we can, and that’s what we’re trying to do this year — just do the best we can. We’re not really thinking about previous years, just doing the best we can each season.”

The men’s race is not nearly as clear cut. Uhrich said that as many as five teams — DePaul, Cincinnati, Memphis, Houston and Marquette — have a legitimate chance to win the championship.

“The men’s race is certainly wide open,” he said.

Marquette’s men’s season has been somewhat disappointing thus far.

After mediocre showings at Bradley and Minnesota, the men took first place at Williamette University in Oregon, but had a subpar finish at the season’s most recent meet, the Pre NCAA National Championships at Northern Iowa.

“It’s been a little bit of an up and down year for the men, but they had such a great race out in Oregon, and if they just do what they did out in Oregon they can win this meet,” Uhrich said.

The men have not won a C-USA championship in the eight-year history of the conference. However, Uhrich hopes that this year the Golden Eagles can change that trend.

“We are traditionally a good peaking team, and we’ve traditionally done well at the conference meet, and I don’t expect that to change,” he said. “I think this can and will be our best meet of the season.”

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