(MILLEDGEVILLE, Ga) – The Truett McConnell University men’s cross country team hit the road for their season opener Friday at the GMC Brickyard Invitational, hosted by Georgia Military College. The Bears placed fifth overall out of eight teams in the 8k run, with a team score of 131.

Sophomore Marco Flores led the way finishing 21st out 72 runners, with a final time of 28:31.55, followed by freshman Kevin Santana who made his debut as a Bear finishing 26th with a time of 28.55.89. Fellow freshman Cooper Gibson (31st) made his debut finishing with a time of 29:57.26, followed by freshman Yael Bradley Hernandez (33rd) who made his debut with a time of 30:24.11. Senior Owen Nobles (35th) ran a 30:36.94, freshman Ethan Deppe ran a 33:55.78 and junior Max Calderon ran a 34:45.59.

“I was pleased at how well our kids performed out the gates,” said Head Coach Jarret Holland. “We’re miles ahead of where we were last year and I feel like we’re headed in the right direction to have a very good season.”

Up next, the Bears will travel to Daytona Beach, Fla. for the Embry-Riddle Invitational Saturday, Sept. 25, with a start time at 7:20 a.m.