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Sunday, June 23, 2024
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Florida’s underdog cross country squad littered with redshirts and freshmen nearly swept the competition in Orlando without its top 16 runners. 

The Florida men’s cross country team won the UCF Invitational Friday night in the 8K, while the women came in second to UCF in the 6K.

This meet comes right after Florida’s top runners competed in the UVA Invitational Friday morning. Florida assistant coach Chris Solinsky said earlier in the week that this would be a good opportunity for runners on the bottom half of the team to prove they deserve to travel and compete in future meets later in the season.

Some runners who increased their stock were redshirt junior Jesse Milson (24:45.2), freshman Caden Monk (25:50.5) and redshirt freshman Carson Lyttle (25:52.7), who finished third, fourth and fifth, respectively.

Three Gators in the top five was enough to secure the win for the men’s team.

The host team was able to get the better half of Florida on the women’s side.

UCF had four runners finish in the top 10 to beat Florida’s three.

Redshirt senior Madison Morse (22:48.2), freshman Jackie Addy (22:59.1) and redshirt freshman Sophia Piniella (23:18.2) finished fourth, eighth and tenth for Florida, respectively. Freshman Gianna Forte (23:21.7) came in 13th while redshirt freshman Autumn Bartlett (25:09.1) came in 23rd.

The Gators will visit Tallahassee next when they compete in the FSU Invitational on Oct. 11 at 7:40 a.m.

Follow Joseph Salvador on Twitter @JSalvadorSports. Contact him at jsalvador@alligator.org.

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