By Danielle Silvia
On Saturday, Oct. 15, the College men’s and women’s cross country teams competed in the Rowan University Inter-Regional Border Battle in Glassboro, N.J.
Of the 25 ranked teams in the country, eight of them were present, in addition to several teams across the Atlantic Region.
Overall, the women placed 13th overall in the championship race on the 7800-meter course, and the men’s team came in 15th place.
The women’s team got a glimpse of the stiff competition they will face at the Atlantic Regional meet later this season.
“The Atlantic region is the strongest region in the nation on the women’s side, but that won’t intimidate this women’s team,” head coach Justin Lindsey said. “This team is focused.”
Sophomore Natalie Cooper had an outstanding race, finishing fifth in the 6000-meter race with a time of 21:02 and third overall for the athletes in the entire Atlantic Region. Cooper’s time placed her amongst the nation’s fastest runners, beating three All-Americans and closing on two more.
“Natalie is becoming one of the toughest cross country competitors in the country,” Lindsey said. “(Assistant) Coach (Michael) Walker and I are excited to see just how fast she can go.”
Besides Cooper, sophomores Erin Holzbaur, Emma Bean and Madeleine Tattory all contributed to the Lions success. The team’s youth and vitality helps them stand out, according to Lindsey.
“The women’s team is so young and competitive, they have the potential to be very successful for the next few years,” Lindsey said. “They feed off of each other which makes them very tough to compete against.”
Holzbaur was the second Lion to finish in 41st place with a time of 21:57. Tattory was the next student from the College across the finish line with a time of 22:41, in 99th place overall, rounding out the top 100 runners of the meet.
Sophomore Emma Bean finished 111th on the course with a time of 22:29, followed by Allison Fournier, who finished 115th with a time of 22:55.
Senior Amy Regan of Stevens Institute of Technology finished with a time of 20:17, taking first place in the meet. John Hopkins University won the meet as a team.
Seniors Andrew Tedeschi and Brandon Mazzarella both earned top times for the College, with Tedeschi in 16th place with a time of 23:57 and Mazzarella in 36th place with a time of 24:25. Both continue their streaks in their last few meets for the Lions cross country team.
“Andrew and Brandon have been exceptional leaders in meets and outside of practice,” Lindsey said. “Through their consistent high level of competition and positive encouragement to the underclassmen, this men’s team is now considered a potential national qualifying unit.”
Other standouts from the men’s team include sophomore Quinn Wasko, who was in third place for the Lions with a time of 24:49 and nabbed 68th place in the entire race. Close behind Wasko was Junior Dale Johnson, who finished 138th with a time of 25:28. Finally, sophomore Luke Prothero finished 155th with a time of 25:39, still in the top five runners for the Lions.
The winner of the race for the men was Isaac Garcia-Cassani from the State University of New York (SUNY) Geneseo with a time of 23:19. The SUNY Geneseo Knights were also the winners of the meet and are currently ranked No. 1 in the U.S. for track collegiate teams.
The Lions have a week to rest and gear up for the New Jersey Athletic Conference Championships on Saturday, Oct. 29, hosted by Stockton University in Galloway Township, N.J.