Anderson shines in first race


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Sophomore Ben Anderson competed and finished strong in his first race this past weekend since coming back from an injury. Anderson redshirted last season after running in only two meets.

He said the Bulldog 4K Classic was the fresh start he needed to get back on track. He won the 4K in 12:30.

“It was a big confidence booster for me,” he said. “This was the first time I actually felt like I raced well in a quality meet.”

Anderson, from Clive, takes pride in running for his home state.

“I love being here,” he said. “It’s fun and cool to have Iowa on your chest.”

Anderson prepared all summer for this season with intense training and workouts — running hills and lifting. However, his main goal was to run as many miles as possible.

“I put in the work, and I put in the miles,” he said. “Summer training is always a good time. It was a lot of fun.”

Anderson said that he ran up to 85 miles by the end of July, and he wants to average roughly 70-75 miles during the season.

Senior teammate Kevin Lewis said he noticed that Anderson had an impressive summer.

“I anticipate him being a pretty big, important part of the team this year,” Lewis said. “He’ll definitely be one of our top guys this year and when I’m gone.”

In addition to summer workouts, Anderson prepared leading up to the meet.

“I’ve been trying to stay as healthy as possible,” he said. “I took my easy days easy and my hard days hard. Eating right, sleeping right, and keeping a clear head has helped me.”

Going into the race, Anderson didn’t think he would win — until the race started.

“Once the race started, I knew that I could win, and I knew that I could do it,” he said.

For the remainder of the season, he hopes to attack more, adding that the last meet he ran at the start of the season he felt “too comfortable.”

“I want to run a race where I feel uncomfortable, but I also want to finish harder,” Anderson said.
Iowa cross-country head coach Layne Anderson thought Ben Anderson ran an intelligent race.

“He won the race, and he couldn’t have ran better,” the head coach said. “There was not a higher place to finish.”

Anderson’s expectations for the meet out of the sophomore were everything he asked for.

“He took control when it mattered coming up the last hill. He ran within himself,” Anderson said. “It went about as perfect as we could ask for.

“I certainly hope this is a confidence builder for him.”

As far as the rest of the season goes, Anderson hopes the Des Moines-area harrier will be more consistent.

“I want him to begin to show that he can be a difference maker for the team, especially in the big meets,” Anderson said.

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