Bulldog Cross Country Teams Return To Action In 24th Annual Spartan Invite

Bulldog Cross Country Teams Return To Action In 24th Annual Spartan Invite

Big Rapids, Mich. - The Ferris State University men's and women's cross country teams returned to action on Friday (Sept. 13) as the Bulldogs took part in the prestigious Michigan State Spartan Invitational held in East Lansing, Mich.

The 24th annual event is typically one of the largest in the region and features teams from all levels of competition in a non-team scoring format.  It hosted nearly 6,500 athletes ranging from college to middle school.

In the men's competition, among non-NCAA Division I schools, the Bulldogs were led by David Silversmith, who took 39th overall in the 8K event in a time of 25:45. He was followed by teammate Brandon Cushman in 42nd place at 25:47.

Spencer Gerber was 44th overall for the Bulldogs in a time of 25:49, Alex Bladecki came in 45th (25:50) and Andrew Harper was 66th (26:16) for the Bulldogs.  Six other FSU runners also competed in the men's competition.

On the women's side, the Bulldogs were paced by senior Samantha Johnson, who finished fourth overall among the non-Division I schools in a time of 21:32. Next up was junior Breeann Ovokaitys in 33rd place (22:51) with freshman Alyssa Cummings 49th (23:07), freshman Jessica Delaney 50th (23:09) and freshman Samantha Humphrey 80th (23:43) in the upper half of the pack for the Bulldogs.

A total of 14 Bulldog runners competed on the Forest Akers East Course in the 257-runner women's field.

The Bulldogs are back in action on Oct. 4 at the Lansing CC Invite before heading to the Greater Louisville Classic on Oct. 5 in Louisville, Ky.

The Ferris State men's and women's cross country teams are guided by former Bulldog standout and current sixth-year head coach Steve Picucci. The Bulldog women are ranked 15th nationally in the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA) Division II Preseason National Rankings along with third in the Midwest Region while the men's team is listed sixth in the regional rankings and 25th in the country.