Elizabethtown College’s cross-country teams continued their stellar performances at the Misericordia Cougar Classic Saturday, Sept. 15. They took first place out of 14 teams with a total of 36 points.
Overall the Blue Jays had seven women and eight men finish in the top 20 for their separate races. The teams’ total time was 2:16:51.42. Lebanon Valley College was only 0:03:90.56 behind, placing themselves in second. First-year Jasmine Boyle described her expectations for the races prior to their meet: “We are looking to improve individual performance, as well as team, and race smarter throughout the course.”
That is exactly what they did. Both the men and women continued to push themselves to reach the goals they made during practice. Junior Traci Tempone placed first for the women’s race, running six kilometers with a time of 23:14.84. Fellow Blue Jays Junior Eileen Cody and Senior Taryn Shank placed fourth and sixth, respectively.
The men had to run eight kilometers but did just as well. Junior Stephen Welsh and senior Aaron Focht placed second and third, respectively. The men were 00:10.52 seconds apart with times of 27:01.23 and 27:11.75. Welsh described how he and Focht worked together throughout the course. They began running with each other in the first few miles and pushed each other to finish the race as strong as they could. However, Welsh believes “there’s always some room for friendly competition.” Nevertheless, Welsh did not forget to point out that in the end they are all on the same team and seeing his teammates succeed is only an encouragement.
The Jays schedule continues Saturday, Sept. 29, at 11 a.m. at the Dickinson College Long-Short Invitational. The following Saturday, Oct. 13, at 11 a.m. the Jays can be found at the Oberlin Inter-Regional Rumble in Oberlin, Ohio. The Jays will host their first meet on Saturday, Oct. 20 at 11 a.m. with the Battle for the Buggy in Hershey, Pa. Boyle has an optimistic view of what the rest of the season will be like: “Right now our expectations for the rest of the season are to keep the positive energy up and really help to support one another and push each other to run faster, and as always hope to do well in post-season meets to make regionals and nationals.”