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Men's Cross Country

Navy Win's Mens XC Star Meet

WAPPINGERS FALLS, N.Y. - Racing in their final Army-Navy Star Meet, the senior duo of Jake Brophy (New Hope, Pa.) and Kevin Murray (Wilmington, Del.) made sure that they would pick up one more star over their archrivals as they turned in a pair of dominant individual performances to lead Navy to a 27-29 victory on the road against Army. Strong efforts by a trio of sophomores augmented Brophy and Murray's 1-2 result to help the Mids earn the two-point win at Bowdoin Park in Wappingers Falls.

Brophy was a man on a mission right from the start on Friday afternoon as he was leading at three of the first four checkpoints, 1.6k, 3.1k, 4.9k and 6.4k. Ahead of his teammate Murray by 7.6 seconds at the 6.4k marker he pulled away for a 9.4-second margin of victory, 22:57.2 to 23:06.6. Murray was nearly as impressive as Brophy as he stayed in the second or third position throughout the entire race. The senior duo finished over 20 seconds ahead of Army's top-finisher, Ben Petralla, who clocked in at 23:27.4.

After Army's Robert Santoyo crossed in fourth place at 23:33.1, Navy sophomore David Nelsen (Chandler, Ariz.) made it three Mids in the top-five as he completed the 7.6k course in a time of 23:35.9.

The host Black Knights put pressure on the Mids as Marshall Beatty and Roman Ollar finished within 2.1 seconds of each other in sixth and seventh place.

Navy's fourth runner to score on Friday was Ashwin Briggs (So., Pickerington, Ohio), who came in eighth at 23:48.0. With each team having four of its runners already complete the race the real-time score was 16-20.

Army's fifth runner to finish was Garrett Gough in ninth place to close the squad's scoring at 29 points. Another Black Knight runner, Daniel Mazzei finished within 0.5 seconds of Gough to finish in tenth. Luke Murphy (So., Tulsa, Okla.) was the last scorer for Navy as he turned in a time of 23:57.4 to place 11th overall.

Three more Mids finished consecutively in positions 12 through 14 as Julian Perez (Jr., Beaumont, Texas) clocked in at 23:59.8 ahead of freshmen Alex Rizzo (Bronxville, N.Y.) and Garrison Clark (Severna Park, Md.) Rizzo posted a time of 24:16.0, while Clark was right behind at 24:17.7.

"When the guys came back from summer this year, it was clear they did what they needed to do to be on the attack in October and November," exclaimed head coach Aaron Lanzel. "Jake and Kevin would not be denied today, but the sophomores ... the sophomores did what I have been waiting to see. They put it all together to show what they are capable of. David Nelsen made the race, and Ashwin was a man possessed to break through. Even our next four ran well and fought throughout the race. I'm very happy that Alex and Garrison were able to step up as freshmen in a pressure race as well. Everyone wants to get some more done this season, but we couldn't be more pleased with how today went."

This win by Navy Men's Cross Country was the 50th in the storied history of this rivalry that dates back to 1937. All-time, Navy is 50-31-1 over Army.

Friday's race was part of the 2019-20 Army-Navy Star Series presented by USAA. In conjunction with Army's victory in the women's cross country race. The series currently sits tied at 3-3-1.

The Midshipmen will now turn their attention to postseason racing in the month of November. First up will be the 2019 Patriot League Championship race on Saturday, Nov. 2 at Colgate University in Hamilton, N.Y.