NASHVILLE, Tenn. - - Belmont University cross country will begin the 2013 fall campaign Friday in the annual Belmont Opener.
The Bruins welcome 10 schools to Percy Warner Park, including OVC rivals Murray State, Tennessee State and UT Martin, as well as SEC stalwarts Kentucky, Tennessee and Vanderbilt.
On the women's side, Belmont looks to build upon a runner-up team finish in the 2012 OVC Championships. And while this year brings together a Bruin squad bereft of upperclassmen, the team features a nice blend of youth and experience. Sophomore Hannah Wittman (Lindenhurst, Ill.) earned Second Team All-OVC honors a year ago.
Belmont women's cross country, ranked No. 14 in the 2013 USTFCCCA Preseason South Region Poll, placed third in the 2012 Belmont Opener.
As for the men, Belmont hopes to takes its first steps towards a deep and significant run towards conference and regionals.
The Bruins return 10 letterwinners, including senior Matt Miller (LaPorte, Ind.), junior Erick Kigen (Eldoret, Kenya) and sophomore Marcus Bridger-Wilkinson (Newbury, England), each of whom redshirted in 2012.
Belmont men's cross country also placed third in the 2012 Belmont Opener.
The women's race is set for 5:30 p.m. CT, with the men's race slated for 6 p.m. CT.