Cross Country Prepared for Competition at 2013 Horizon League Championship

Junior Tess Ehrhardt
Junior Tess Ehrhardt

Oct. 31, 2013

CHICAGO- The UIC men's and women's cross country teams are set to compete in the 2013 Horizon League Championship on Saturday, Nov. 2, hosted by Youngstown State.  The event will take place at the Boardman Cross Country Course in Youngstown, Ohio with the men's 8K race beginning at 10:00 a.m. CT and the women 5K race starting at 11:00 a.m.

"We're going into this meet with the intent to win both the men's and women's races," said Head Coach Jim Knoedel.  "Anything less and we will not meet the goals we set the first day of practice."

The teams look for high-caliber performances from their runners as the 2013 Cross Country Championship is up for grabs since the 2012 reigning champions Loyola are no longer members of the the Horizon League.

"I expect all the upper class athletes to show their teammates what it means to be dependable and to set the level of expectation for everyone to bring home the championship trophy," said Knoedel. 

The men look to improve last year's second-place finish with the help of upperclassmen Photis Karkalis, Arash Darbandi, Thomas Kohs and freshman Kyle Hauser who have made big impacts during competition throughout the season.  In 2012, the men's squad was led by Angelos Karkalis (25:27) placing sixth and Photis Karkalis (26:39) who placed 32nd in the 8K race. 



"Tess has a tough race ahead of her," said Knoedel.  "We talked earlier in the year about being a champion and winning the championship race, she has a very good runner from Youngstown State that is going to certainly be a challenge.  "Tess has always risen to the occasion and she has run faster than any other athlete we've had here UIC. "I know on race day when she has to run her best she will do that."

On the women's side veteran leadership will be relied on by junior Tess Ehrhardt who has placed within the top-10 in four of her last five meets, she has also held the title of Horizon League Runner of the Week for three consecutive weeks.  Ehrhardt (18:20), Emma Preston (18:34), Rebecca Zaiter (18:41), Lauren Lindholm (18:44) and Stephanie Sanders (19:08) placed within the top-25 runners in last year's meet, leading the women to a second-place finish in the 5K. 

"Everyone is feeling healthy and they are certainly ready to go," said Knoedel.  "We've rested enough, if they aren't ready now they're never going to be ready."

Results and awards will be announced around 12:45 p.m. for those on-site, with online coverage to follow right here at