Men’s final rankings from the Classic Kiteley-McInnes CIS-XC poll at Montreal Endurance brought to you by New Balance

Well, conference weekend did not disappoint. Coast to coast the men of the CIS were in action in what was the penultimate effort before the big dance. To some extent we all tried hard to draw ourselves a picture of what, really, will be unpredictable. One thing is sure though : as everyone boils to an almost unbearable level of excitement for the championship (and the party, let’s be real here), conference weekend brought drama to the table like never before.

Mat Mcneil successfully ‘‘Kelly Wiebe’d’’ the field at AUS, thus staying undefeated all-season. St-FX then proceeded to sweep the next spots, as we’d expect after their good runs this season. Can the stud from the East duke it out with the big guns from the West, like Joel Bourgeois and Eric Gillis did in their days? Can St-Fx use their tight spread to sneak in the top 8?

Les boys ran hard in la Belle Province, letting only 2 very talented McGill runners penetrate their top 11. As everyone fought hard for a spot on the CIS team, the Laval men managed an impressive 19 second spread over 10k for it’s top 5, and 36 seconds for the top 7 – that’s insane. Are we talking about the fastest top 7 in the country? Will the depth be enough to bring home some hardware? Can Jarry and Briand spoil the party up front after promising runs?

UPSET CITY! Yes, Guelph wins, but is a point shy from losing it’s banner to Windsor – the eternal blue collar team. While we were questionning ourselves in the last years ‘‘ Who will be the runner breaking Guelph’s perfect score?’’ this year’s showing was far from a confidence booster heading into CI’s for the Gryphs. Alex Wilkie proved that his form is no fluke, handling great opposition from Janikowski, Tree, Henderson (got my spelling right this time) and Woodfine. Does Windsor finishing a point away from Guelph mean there is a chance the 10 year streak might come to an end? Is there any other team out there who can pretend to a title? Will Wilkie beat McNeil? (lol)

Yusuf of Manitoba and Widing of Saskatchewan lead the way in the prairies; rumours say we should start paying attention to them. Although Calgary did win, Alberta and Winnipeg were only 4 points behind (tie breaker for second) and much more hot on Calgary’s heels than we expected. How are the teams from the prairies going to fare against the OUA powerhouse and the RSEQ resistance that is Laval? They most certainly have the power to shake thing up up front and complicate calculations for the top 3 teams…

While TWU and Victoria sat out, you know they will show up. Two teams on par, who we know have podium potential, just sippin’ on their West Coast gluten free fair trade organic tea and making sure their legs are ready for the big dance.

Well, I think it’s unessecary now to go into further details on the teams as we’ve decrypted all their moves since pre-season. Thousands of miles have been run and we shall let the blood, sweat and tears shed by the CIS runners this season do the talking on Saturday. It is now time to unveil the results of the last panel, along with the runners who will align this Saturday in Guelph; let’s give them blessing from the running gods before they go to war.

Guelph, 84 pts : Aaron Hendrikx, Tristan Woodfine, Christian Gravel, Ben Workman, Brayben Seneca, Connor Black, Andrew Gordon, Mark Patton, Peter Quosai. Best of luck to the team; I’m pretty sure messing around in Gryphon territory is will be dangerous for any predator.

Windsor, 79 pts : Paul Janikowski, Corey Bellemore, Joe Kagumba, Taylor McArthur, Jordan Collison, Shawn Master, Michael Pesce, Alex Ullman. Good luck to the Lancers; we wish you a Melissa Bishop-esque triumph.

Laval, 77 pts : Nicolas Morin, Dany Racine, Vincent Hoa Mai, Benjamin Raymond, Alexandre Ricard, Emmanuel Boisvert, Jean-Daniel Labranche, Patrick Rouleau. Bonne chance Les Boys, vous voyez Rouge et vous voulez l’Or. LMCCBC!

Trinity Western, 69 pts : Declan White, Joel De Schiffart, Levi Neufield, Blair Johnston, Caleb De Jong, Tyler De Jong, Nick Colyn, Adam Marshall. Best of luck, may the hype train carry you to you fastest results.

McMaster, 63 pts : Connor Darlington, Blair Morgan, Taylor Forbes, Austen Forbes, Nick Kondrat, Patrick Deane, Jeff Tweedle, Luke Charbonneau, Derek Van Schepen, Gabriel Ghiglione. Good luck to the Marauders, may you have redemption from 2014.

Victoria, 60 pts : Olivier Collin, Forrest Simpson, Ryan Cassidy, Shoayb Bascal, Cole Peterson, Cody Therrien, Ben Weir, Derrick Evans, Ian Searle. Looking forward seeing the Vikes raid upon Guelph and break everything in their path; best of luck.

Queen’s, 30 pts : Alex Wilkie, Jeff Archer, Erik Wynands, Mark Schmidt, Joey Stel, Chris Fitzgibbon, Dave Cashin, Adam Paquette, Brandon Thomas. Good luck to the Golden Gaels. Here’s hoping the ground troops back up coach Boyd’s online shenanigans.

Calgary, 29 pts : Russel Pennock, Roman Justinen, Alex James, Ryan Grieco, Rahman Ismail, Stephan Daniel, Will Clack, Evan Yarmush. Good luck to the Dinos, unleash your inner beast like it’s Jurassic Park.

Lakehead, 18 pts : Kevin Tree, Dylan Brown, Gavin Shields, Dominique Aulagnon, Mason Querrell, Trevor Zimak, Kenny Groop, Tyler White. Good luck to the Thunderwolves; hard to be more badass than a Thunder-****ing-wolf.

St-FX, 15 pts : Scott Donald, Lee Wesselius, Alex Cyr, Wil Russel, Nick Favero, Riley Johnston, Cal Dewolfe, Edward Macdonald, Paul MacLellan, Angus Rawling. Best of luck to the X-men, time to shine, boys.

See y’all on Saturday!