Big Dogs Stay on the Porch, But Just About Everyone Else Runs in Cajun Classic

Posted October 9, 2016 / Last updated October 10, 2016

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Juniors Peter Carr, Ben Finicle, and Chris Ross all placed in the Top Ten at the Country Day Cajun Classic on Saturday, Oct. 8.

Juniors Peter Carr, Ben Finicle, and Chris Ross all placed in the Top Ten at the Country Day Cajun Classic on Saturday, Oct. 8.

After an early morning training run, Jesuit’s Top Seven cross country runners of the moment–seniors Reed Meric, John Kling, Eli Sisung, Luke Malter, and Tanner Tresca, along with juniors Michael Williams and Jordan Tufts–sat back and watched as their teammates, virtually all of them, participated in the Country Day Cajun Classic on Saturday, Oct. 8 at City Park.

Coach Rudy Horvath ’86 entered two official squads in the race, comprising the next 14 healthy runners on the Blue Jay depth chart. Team Blue, captained by junior Peter Carr, included junior Jonathan Arnold, freshman Cameron Cancienne, junior Ben Finicle, junior Ryan Guillot, sophomore Harrison LeBlanc, and senior Sam Recile. Team White, captained by junior Chris Ross, included sophomore Michael Buisson, junior Garret Crumb, freshman Brandon Hall, sophomore Scott McKeough, junior Brenner Rauch, and senior Hayden Ricca. More than 50 additional runners competed as individuals.

For the second straight week, Ross turned in an impressive performance. After posting Jesuit’s seventh-fastest time in the previous week’s meet (a meet in which all of the Jays’ top runners participated), Ross finished third overall with a time of 17:21.

Ross’s time led Team White to a second place finish in the team totals. The winner? Jesuit’s Team White, which rode Top Ten finishes from four of its members–Carr (fifth, 17:34); Finicle (sixth, 17:37), Arnold (seventh, 17:46) and LeBlanc (10th, 17:56).

The day’s big question, of course, was whether anyone would make a strong enough statement to merit a harder look to be among the seven runners who will lace up their sneakers for the state meet in November. The runners who sat the day out clearly have the inside track to be among the group that attempts to bring home Jesuit’s third consecutive Division 1 state championship trophy. But that doesn’t necessarily mean things are set in stone.

“Oh, I’m still evaluating,” said Horvath. “No one should be too comfortable yet.”

Jesuit returns to the City Park course next Saturday, Oct. 15, for the Allstate Sugar Bowl Metro Meet. That race is a pretty good barometer of the times athletes need to be consistently running to be tapped by Horvath for the seven state roster slots. Last year at that race, six Blue Jays came in at 17:14 or better.