On October 1, the Men and Women’s Cross-Country teams competed at the historic Paul Short Invitational on the Murray Goodman Campus at Lehigh University. Both teams competed in the elite gold race, which was the most competitive race of the day. Other events during the day included the Open, White, and Brown races.
The invitational is among one of the largest cross-country meets in the United States. In attendance were teams such as Northern Arizona University, Rutgers University, East Carolina University, and West Virginia.
“We had some very solid performances for both teams at the Paul Short Invitational. It’s great to have the opportunity to test ourselves against some of the best.” said Head Coach Mike Nelson.
The women’s team placed 16 out of 37 lead by Junior Sammi Ragenklint. She ran a personal best time of 20:35 for 13th place. Following her was fifth year student Mackenzie Jones in 53rd place with a time of 21:04.
Nelson said, “Today’s race was somewhat of a breakthrough for the women’s team. They have elevated themselves to another level and it’s fun to watch. We had Sammi near the front of the race, which is huge because there were well over three hundred competitors. We had solid team depth to go along with our front running.”
In third place for the team, Sophomore Katie Locker finished in a time of 22:10 for 158th overall. “As good as the women ran, I believe there is still room for improvement once we get a few people back from injury. We will take the lessons we learned today and be stronger for our next meet.” Nelson mentioned about the upcoming weeks.
Following her performance, Junior Sammi Ragenklint earned MAAC Cross-Country runner of the week for the third week in a row.
On the men’s side, the team finished 25 out of 40. Senior Louis DiLaurenzio was the first Hawk to cross the line, finishing at 144th with a time of 25:06. Following DiLaurenzio, was Freshman Luke Miller running 25:12 for a new personal best at 158th overall.
Following right behind Miller, was Junior Cameron Janovic running in 159th place. Janovic ran a time of 25:13. Nelson spoke about the race saying, “We took a step forward on the men’s side today but we’re still not quite where we’d like to be. We’re running a little better each meet, so we’re trending in the right direction.”
Up next, the Hawks will compete at the Princeton Invitational on October 16 in West Windsor, NJ. They will run against teams such as Rider University, Villanova University, University of Pennsylvania, Boston University, and the host Princeton University.