CLEMSON, N.C.-The Brevard College cycling team competed over the weekend in a Southeastern Conference racing event hosted by Clemson Univeristy.
The weekend began with the downhill races on Saturday with the Clemson downhill track emphasizing quick and tight corners with several large obstacles.
Dan Ennis and Sarah Hill blasted their way to hard-fought victories in both of the 'A' category races for Brevard. Also placing in the 'A' top-10 were Mac Banner for the men, and Erica Zaveta and Nicole Miranda on the women's side.
In the men's 'B', Kody Hughes claimed another top-10 for BC with an 8th place finish. Rounding out a great downhill showing for the team was Cooper Pursley with a 6th place in the men's 'C'.
The short track races followed, where Cypress Gorry battled from far outside the top-10 on the first lap of the men’s ‘A’ to finish in a close 2nd place, followed by teammate Lewis Gaffney in 3rd. The BC women stepped up in the 'A' competition as Zaveta took the win and Hill placed second.
Dillon Brown took home a 6th place in the men's 'B', followed by a 2nd place by Liza Fortenberry in the women's 'B'.
Capping a great showing for BC in the short track was Colby McAlister, who took home another win in the Men’s ‘C’. Despite a crash early in the race, Regis Bryer joined McAlister in the top-10 with a 6th place finish.
Saturday’s final event was the dual slalom competition, which was held on a professionally-built, large-scale slalom course. The quality of the course offered great preparation for the national championships at the end of October.
After many hard runs in the men's 'A' single elimination races, the Tornados placed three in the top-10. Ennis placed 4th despite a mechanical malfunction in the final, followed by Asher Blackmore in 6th and Blake Stephenson in 9th.
Zaveta grabbed 2nd place in the women's 'A' along with three of her Brevard teammates in the top-10. Hill took 5th despite a bad crash,w hile Courtney Carter took 6th and Miranda placed 8th.
Hughes scored his second top-10 of the weekend with a 7th in the men's 'B' before Pursley put together his best race of the season with a 2nd in the men's 'C'.
Over the 30 miles of Sunday’s cross country men’s ‘A’ race, BC was able to work together to bring home a victory. Gaffney got the win, with teammates Dylan Johnson in 3rd, Zach Valdez in 7th, and Keith Marek in 12th.
Following the race, Lewis was quick to praise his teammates; "The cross country race at Clemson was an awesome show of teamwork. When all three of us made the lead group we were able to work together extremely well. When I got a gap the other two sat in and I knew if I was brought back they would be able to take advantage of it. When the gap grew, it was just a hard effort from there. It was such an awesome race and so cool to be able to finish up an amazing team effort."
The day ended with Brown scoring his second top-10 of the weekend in the 'B' cross country. The men's 'C' race followed and saw McAlister claim his second win of the weekend, joined by Regis Bryer in 7th.
The Tornados continue the mountain bike season with an upcoming race at Mars Hill this weekend. BC cycling will then host the Southeastern Conference Championships on the 19th and 20th of October.
The National Championships will be held in Beech Mountain, North Carolina on the weekend of October 25-27.