Lions step ahead at Blue/Gold

By Danielle Silvia

Staff Writer

While Labor Day weekend marks rest and relaxation before the summer draws to a close, the College’s men’s and women’s cross country teams spent their weekend at the Blue/Gold Invitational on Saturday, Sept. 3.

The Blue/Gold Invitational is an annual event that the College hosts as a fun kickoff to both the cross country and autumn seasons.

The meet included Division I athletes from St. Joseph’s and Rider universities. A Division II program, Georgian Court University, rounded out the action.

In the 5K event, three runners from the College made it into the top 10 with phenomenal finishes. Standouts from the Lions in this event include junior Dale Johnson.

Johnson has been continuously strengthening his athletic abilities and been cutting down on his running times over the summer. Overall, Johnson placed second in the meet with his time of 15:43.

Another achievement came from senior Brandon Mazzarella. Mazzarella has been contributing not only his athletic ability to the team, but also his leadership skills.

Mazzarella finished in eighth place with a time of 15:58 overall for the College’s men’s team.

Additionally, sophomore Matthew Saponara finished with a time of 16:04 and made the cut off for the top 10 spots.

Cooper finishes in the top 10 at the Blue/Gold Invitational. (Photo courtesy of Sports Information Desk)
Cooper finishes in the top 10 at the Blue/Gold Invitational. (Photo courtesy of Sports Information Desk)

For the women, sophomore Natalie Cooper clocked in at 19:18 to snag a seventh place finish. Behind her was fellow sophomore Erin Holzbaur, who placed ninth at 19:29.

Many alumni were also able to compete in this weekend’s race, too, and while many are not quite in the shape they were back in their college years, they were able to finish the race and enjoy themselves.

The College will return to action on Friday, Sept. 16, for the Rider Invitational.