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Irish, Rydberg hopeful for win on Friday

Sep 28, 2012, 9:30 AM EDT

The Irish cross-country teams return to the Burke Golf Course on campus today after a two-week hiatus.

Notre Dame welcomes a plethora of elite athletes as it hosts the 57th annual Notre Dame Invitational. Florida State, Butler, North Carolina State and New Mexico are headlining the schools competing against Notre Dame’s star-studded field. Eight D-I men’s teams will compete and four other ranked D-I women’s teams will be in action Friday.

Friday will be the second time the Irish have run in competition on the golf course this season. Earlier this season the men and women’s teams both claimed championships on their home course in the National Catholic Invitational.

“I think there is definitely an advantage in having raced the course already,” senior Jessica Rydberg said. “This is a unique race because we are able to race against quality competition on our home course. We are comfortable here.”

While the quality of competition is high, the Irish aren’t intimidated.

“Our goal is to win the race,” Rydberg said. “Personally, I hope to be in the top 20 and to stick with the team for as long as I can.”

The invitational will begin at 2 p.m. ET with the women’s gold division 5k and will shortly be followed by the men’s gold division race at 2:45 p.m. ET.  There will be a brief break in the varsity action when the JV race starts at 3:30 p.m. ET.  The D-I teams will then race in the blue division races. The women begin at 4:15 p.m. ET and the men will cap the event at 5 p.m. ET.

Scores will be updated after each race on und.com.

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