On Thursday evening, the cross country team traveled to Haverford College to attend the Main Line Invitational. The meet was not a team scoring event, but it allowed many individuals to shine.
“This race wasn’t really about getting fast times,” junior Martine McGrath said, “but more about just getting into the race and getting a good workout.”
McGrath brought home the gold for the women, a personal collegiate career first. McGrath led the race from start to finish. Her time for the three-mile race was 18:01.30, and she outran the rest of the field by a gap of 20 seconds.
Additionally, four of her teammates also finished in the top 20: junior Angela Tecco finished seventh in 18:46.80, junior Megan Donovan finished 10th in 18:54.50, senior Erin Enderly finished 18th in 19:70.70 and junior Stephanie Herrick finished 20th in 19:23.20.
“The team is very supportive of each other,” McGrath said. “We are always working together and making sure everyone is improving.”
“It was a small race,” head coach Phil Jennings said, “but the women have already improved since last week and they will continue to do so for the rest of the season.”
The men’s team also raced well at Haverford. Junior Chris Guerriero once found himself at the front of the four-mile race, ending with an eighth place finish in 20:10.10.
“This team is strong and resilient,” he said. “It’s great running with a bunch of guys who pull their own. When you trust your team will be there on race day, you can focus more and get the job done.”
Other male top finishers for the Lions included senior Anthony Arnold (18th in 20:42.70) and senior co-captain Galen Johnson (29th in 21:04.90).
Freshman TJ Bocchino made the adjustment between high school and college running look easy, running a time of 21:05.30 and finishing 30th, just behind Johnson.
“(Bocchino) has proven he’s ready and keeps impressing week after week,” Guerriero said about the contributions of his new teammate.
With the Mainline Invitational behind them and two races of experience under their belts, the team will head to Lehigh University Friday to compete against some of the best Division I and Division III schools in the nation. The meet will provide a challenge that the Lions are prepared to face. Coach Jennings said he believes both the men’s and women’s teams will “fair solidly against these nationally-ranked schools.”
“There’s still a long season ahead of us,” Guerriero said, “and all of these races are just preparing us for the bigger championships at the end of the season where we always come to play.”