The Elizabethtown College women’s and men’s cross country teams both took home wins Saturday, Oct. 14 at the Rochester Yellowjacket Invitational.
Placing first for the third time this season, the women’s cross country team soared to the finish line. Seniors Brenna McNamee, Maria Anderson and Kelsey Brady led the Jays in the race, placing first, second and third, respectively.
McNamee, coming in the top four in each of the last three races, received her second first-place win of the season with a time of 22:42.3. She came out strong and led the pack in the 2000-meter race with Anderson and Brady right behind her.
Anderson ran her best career 6K with a time of 22:50.0. Anderson described it as a “perfect finish to the race” being right behind McNamee and having Brady right behind her.
Running her first 6,000-meter race of the season, Brady finished third with a time of 22:55.7.
Junior Colleen Kernan placed eighth, coming in at 23:29.9 and first-year Kaitlin Donahue missing 10th place by just a second, scoring 11th with a time of 23:36.7.
Anderson explained how the team works on their speed and power to help the team be “confident that [they] can run fast when it comes to race day.”
When the race gets tough, Anderson said she thinks about her team and their determination to go to nationals again.
“I think about my teammates and how hard they’re working for me, so I have to work hard for them,” she said. Her determination, along with that of her teammates, is what helps make them so successful in their competitions.
Men’s cross country finished sixth out of the 17 scored teams at the Invitational with a score of 182 points. Sophomore Samuel Gerstenbacher led the Jays, placing 10th with a time of 26:42.8. After finishing, his first thought went to his teammates and where they were in the race. Junior Tyler Alansky came in at 31st place with a time of 27:15.3. Senior Tommy Fitzgerald and sophomores Ryan Rippeon and Liam Coverdale also scored points for the Jays with their times of 27:36.5 in 42nd place, 27:46.5 in 48th place, and 27:52.1 in 51st place, respectively.
Running about 70 miles a week, lifting and doing core exercises, the men’s cross country team works hard to push themselves every day of practice.
“Our spor t , along with others , demands daily work if we are to improve,” Gerstenbacher said.
Dai ly, they focus on hydrat ing, stretching and sleeping well to be able to not just do well in practice, but then take that all and do the best they can in a race.
The men and women’s cross country teams will be competing next on Oct. 20 at the LVC Last Chance Run Fast Invitational.