`Forty Flames to Follow' for 2013-14: Marcus Garcia

Garcia earned second-team All-League status in cross country as a freshman.
Garcia earned second-team All-League status in cross country as a freshman.

June 20, 2013

CHICAGO – In his freshmen season, UIC distance runner Marcus Garcia proved to be a valuable piece to the Flames’ cross country and track and field team.  Not only was it Garcia’s first year competing at the collegiate level, but he was also able to fight through a nagging injury and post team-leading times.  Garcia’s talents and prospect for the future make him a prime candidate for the ‘Forty Flames to Follow’ summer series, a segment of that highlights returning student-athletes for 2013-14.

Perhaps Garcia’s biggest accomplishment last season was his individual 11th place finish at the 2012 Horizon League Cross Country Championships.  His time of 25:45 stands as a personal-best for the 6K race and landed him on the All-Conference Second-Team.  The Flames squad went on to take home the runner-up trophy, the program’s best finish since 2006. 

During the indoor campaign, Garcia posted a team-leading time of 15:51.24 in the 5,000 meters at the North Central Opener on Jan. 18.  He would go on to place 12th in the 5K at the league outdoor championships with a personal-best time of 15:48.34.  In the 10,000 meters, Garcia crossed the finish line seventh at the HL Championships with a time of 32:46.85, running the event for the first time.  Earlier in the outdoor season, Garcia set the standard for UIC runners with a team-best time of 9:02.91 in the 3,000 meters. 

“Marcus is an extremely hard worker,” said head coach Jim Knoedel.  “He battled with some knee soreness during the indoor season, so that limited his training and his outdoor season.  He is certainly one of the best freshmen I have ever coached in the 10,000 meters.