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Florida Hosts Mountain Dew Invitational Friday Morning

Courtesy of University Athletic Association

Gators cross country team hosts first athletic competition for UF since March 11

Florida hosts the Mountain Dew Invitational on Friday morning at the Mark Bostick Golf Course, which is the first of four meets this season for the cross country team and its lone home meet.

The meet, which has been hosted in Gainesville annually since 2005, begins at 7:55 a.m. ET with the men’s 8,000-meter race (8k) followed by the women’s 6k race, set for 8:30 a.m.

The Mountain Dew Invitational is slated to be the first athletic competition that any Gators program has participated in since the softball team defeated Florida State, 5-2, on March 11 at Katie Seashole Pressly Stadium.

Last year, UF swept the Mountain Dew Invitational with both the men’s and women’s teams winning the meet thanks to Jessica Pascoe (1st overall) and Nick Deal (6th overall) leading the charge for their respective squads.

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The men’s team will have Marshall Dillon, Trevor Foley, Ethan Geiger, Joshua King, Reed Legg, Blake Lowery, Jesse Millson, Caden Monk, Angel Vicioso, Dominic Williams, and Cavan Wilson competing.

On the women’s side, Payton Capes-Davis, Emily Culley, Gianna Forte, Liina Winborn, and Cheyenne Young will be competing for the squad that has won the Mountain Dew Invitational six-straight times.

Currently, Florida State, Georgia Tech, and Miami are scheduled to compete alongside the Gators on Friday.

Friday’s meet is open and free to the public, but anyone in attendance is asked to adhere to CDC guidelines including physical distancing and wearing a mask.

MOUNTAIN DEW INVITATIONAL MEET INFORMATION (all times Eastern)

·         – Live Results

·        –  Mark Bostick Golf Course

·        –  Free Admission

·         – Men’s 8k Race: 7:55 a.m.

·         – Women’s 6k Race: 8:30 a.m.

·         – Fans in attendance must adhere to CDC guidelines, including physical distancing and wearing a mask

QUOTABLES

Assistant Coach (Distance) Chris Solinsky: “We are excited to move forward and host the Mountain Dew (Invitational) on Friday,” Solinsky said. “It is an exciting time for the program as we are happy with our progress from year to year. To cap it all off, we will be the first sporting event that UF has hosted since we shut everything down six months ago. The kids have worked really hard during the shut down, and it will be great for them to have a chance to compete at home.”

Senior Payton Capes-Davis: “There is just something about testing your limits as both an individual and a team that is so special,” Capes-Davis said. “While this year may look a little different, it doesn’t take away from the process that has gotten all of us to the line. All the early mornings and masks worn are going to pay off. Especially when the gun goes off, all of the world outside of that moment disappears and all that matters are my teammates and the goals ahead.”

Sophomore Emily Culley: “The countdown to our first meet is coming to an end,” Culley said. “Many of us haven’t raced in months and the excitement is at its peak. Not only will this first meet be on our own course, but also against two of our in-state rivals. I’m so excited to see what the Gator ladies have in store.”

Redshirt-Senior Blake Lowery: “I enjoy every opportunity to lace up the spikes and compete with the trench boys,” Lowery said. “Opening the season at home is extra special, too, especially in my last cross country season.”

Next Up: Florida will travel to the FSU Invitational on October 2 in Tallahassee. UF swept the meet last season with Pascoe and Matt Clark leading the way.