A wall of spectators barricaded 41 cross country teams onto the Genesee Valley Park course this Saturday, Nov. 15. Over 500 runners competed at the NCAA Division III Atlantic Regional Championships for the chance to go to Nationals. Unfortunately, the College did not make it.
The women’s team placed 10th, but only the top two teams receive automatic bids to Nationals. Senior Megan Stack placed 23rd at 22:35.9, the first Lion across.
The large crowd did not intimidate Stack “because there is always so much energy around you to keep you motivated,” she said.
Behind Stack, junior Carly Martz finished 58th with a time of 23:18.1. Freshman Allison Fournier and senior Jillian Manzo crossed the finish line in tandem: Fournier finished 68th with a time of 23:25.3 and Manzo finished 69th with a time of 23:25.9.
The men’s team placed 13th with sophomore Andrew Tedeschi placing 23rd with a time of 25:47.7. Tedeschi also relished in the excitement of the crowd.
“It was extremely loud during the race,” Tedeschi said. “Our whole team came down to cheer. (It) really got the adrenaline going.”
Senior Jeremy Garrell crossed 64th with a time of 26:31.1. Sophomore Brandon Mazzarella placed 70th, posting a time of 26:39.9.
Behind them, junior Scott Savage posted a time of 26:47.6, placing 80th; junior Tyler Grimm posted a time of 26:48.9, placing 84th; and freshman Dale Johnson finished with 26:53.5 on the clock, placing 86th.
Because of the small size of the course, the runners had to get into good position before the first bend, lest they get caught in the back and it becomes harder to move up.
Most of the runners will be able to try for Nationals again in the indoor track.
But with winter track and field ahead in the distance, the focus is on that for now.
“It’s my senior year, so I am going to miss running cross country,” Stack said. “But I am excited for track season to begin.”