The Valparaiso men’s cross country team competed in its final race prior to the league championship meet on Saturday, running to a fifth-place finish at the Evansville Invitational in Evansville, Ind.
The Crusaders totaled 113 points on Saturday to finish in fifth place. IUPUI took the team title with 29 points, while Evansville’s Josh Genet crossed the line in 25:21.90 as the individual champion.
A trio of Crusader runners finished within nine seconds of each other to pace the Valpo contingent on Saturday. Sophomore David Rutkowski (Cedarburg, Wis./Living Word Lutheran) led the way by completing the 8K course in 26:55.16, good for 18th place, while junior Mike Salguero (Ebensburg, Pa./Central Cambria) finished right behind Rutkowski with a time of 26:57.17. Junior Matthew Przybyla (Whitmore Lake, Mich./Pinckney) crossed the line in 27:03.57 to come home in 22nd place.
Senior Wally Bradford (Mukwonago, Wis./Mukwonago) finished in 34th position, completing the race in 27:38.09 on Saturday. Sophomore Trace Ostergren (LaPorte, Ind./Culver Academy) rounded out Valpo’s top-five runners, finishing in 38th place with a time of 27:50.68.
Valparaiso has two weeks to prep for the 2012 Horizon League Championships, being held in Kenosha, Wis. on Saturday, Oct. 27.