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Ferree looks to bounce back

BY MARIO WILLIAMS | NOVEMBER 06, 2014 5:00 AM

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Something was different about Iowa’s last cross-country meet. At the Big Ten meet, on Nov. 2, Nate Ferree wasn’t part of the usual pack.

Ferree was the last Iowa runner to finish, which his head coach noted was due to cramps. The sophomore crossed the line at 26:10 to earn 44th place.

The expectations for Ferree were clearly not met.

“The expectations at the conference meet were that he was ready to finish somewhere in the range of Kevin Docherty and Ben Witt,” Iowa head coach Layne Anderson said.

Witt was the team’s second-fastest runner, behind senior Kevin Lewis, while Docherty was the third.

Despite having his worst performance at the Big Ten matchup, it certainly doesn’t compare with the success Ferree has had all season.  

The Appleton, Wisconsin, native competed at five meets this season in which he’s done fairly well. His two best finishes came at the Illinois State Invitational, where he placed 14th in 25:00, and at the Big Ten Preview, where he finished in 25:42 to earn 17th place.

Lewis complimented his solid performance through the season.

“He has had some great races,” Lewis said. “He has always been training hard so more good races will come, and he’ll start to get more consistent with everything.”

Train he did. Ferree continually ran with Witt and Lewis throughout the season to help prepare for the more-aggressive meets.

It came as no surprise to his teammates that, after all that practice with the team’s best runners, he had the success he had this season.

“He’s been working out with Kevin Lewis this year, so he has definitely been putting in the work to move up to the next pack,” teammate Kevin Docherty said.

Senior Sam Fourman believes Ferree’s intense training as allowed him to compete against the fierce competition that’s ahead.

“Nate has been running great workouts all season,” Fourman said. “We know he is capable of running with top guys.”

Despite the disappointment at conference meet, sophomore Ben Anderson believes Ferree is gaining momentum.

“He works just as hard as anybody and he’s a huge part of what we are trying to do here,” Anderson said. “He for sure is making up ground.”

Fourman shared similar thoughts about Ferree’s performance this season.

“Nate has played a huge role in our success as a team this year,” he said. “He’s a runner that you can always count on to leave everything he has out on the course.”

With the Big Ten championships behind him, and with regionals ahead, his head coach looks forward to seeing him bounce back.

“He has to get back on the horse and not lose confidence,” Layne Anderson said. “There should be no reason he can’t get back on the horse and finish successfully. ”

Fourman also has confidence that Ferree will perform well after a disappointing championship race.

“Although his Big Ten race didn’t go as well as he would have like, we all know he’ll bounce back and race great at regionals,” Fourman said.


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