By Ann Brunn
The College’s country teams competed in the Highlander Challenge at New Jersey Institute of Technology on Oct. 5, where the women finished in 14th place and the men came in fifth.
The women’s team finished 14th out of 29 teams in a field that consisted of teams from all three NCAA divisions.
Senior Hailey Bookwalter finished with a time of 19:54:02 in the 5-kilometer event, which was good compared to the 47th-place finish for the Lions.
Freshman Valentina Palomo and sophomore Christina Cauley placed 63rd and 75th, respectively, with times of 20:16:61 and 20:33:86. Freshman Liz Askin and juniors Katelyn Morgan, Casey Hopkins and Sarah Carlson rounded out the scoring places for the Lions.
The men finished fifth out of 31 teams in the field, while placing second among Division III competition.
Sophomore Stuart Gruters was the top runner for the Lions, posting a 30th-place finish in the 8-kilometer race with a time of 26:50:25. Freshman Kevin Christensen placed close in 35th at a time of 26:59:22.
Freshmen Tyler Balas and Michael Bond, sophomore Fabian Mestanza and junior Alex Carideo all placed within 12 seconds of each other, finishing between 41st and 51st place.
Sophomore Michael Iannotta rounded out the scoring positions for the Lions with a 59th-place finish.
Both teams were back in action on Saturday, Oct.12, racing in the Ronald C. Hoffmann Invitational at St. Lawrence University in Canton, N.Y.
The men finished seventh out of 21 teams and had the chance to preview the upcoming regional course.
Junior Robert Abrams paced the Lions with a 12th-place overall finish in the 8-kilometer race, running in at 26:02. Sophomore William Mayhew finished in 28th with a time of 26:26:07.
Senior Evan Bush and sophomore Patrick Mulligan placed in 45th and 48th, respectively, with nearly identical times. Junior Matt Kole finished in 59th place, while senior Mike Zurzolo and freshman Steven Mendez completed the scoring placements for the Lions.
The women finished in ninth place out of 20 teams, while also having the opportunity to preview the upcoming regional course. Sophomore Kelsey Kobus led the charge for the Lions with a 39th place finish in the 6-kilometer race with a time of 24:21:8. Sophomore Nicole Fenske and senior Gabby Devito finished 44th and 47th, respectively, with times of 24:28:2 and 24:33:8.
Junior Emily Forester and sophomore Emily Prendergast placed 60th and 72nd, respectively, while senior Ryann Reagan and sophomore Hanna Batchelder rounded out the scoring for the Lions.
The men’s and women’s teams will run again on Saturday, Oct. 19, when they compete in the St. Joseph’s College Cross Country Invitational in Patchogue, N.Y.