CROSS COUNTRY | Women Win In New York
Published: Monday, October 29, 2012
Updated: Monday, October 29, 2012 22:10
The Georgetown cross country teams had a phenomenal showing at the Big East championships in New York City Friday, with the women’s squad's winning the conference for the first time in 11 years and the men’s squad's finishing second.
“We are just coming on now,” women’s Head Coach Michael Smith said. “Friday was just us moving forward, and we’re going to be a lot better than that in three weeks, and we’re timing our training to make sure we’re ready for nationals.”
Pack running was the key for the women’s victory. Junior Madeline Chambers led the charge for the Hoyas, taking seventh place in 21:00. Right behind her were sophomores Katrina Coogan (who took eighth in 21:04) and Annamarie Maag (10th in 21:15).
The fourth Hoya finisher was freshman Samantha Nadel, who took 16th in 21:26 in her first race for the Blue and Gray, while senior Kirsten Kasper rounded out the scoring by finishing 17th in 21:30. That 30-second one-to-five team gap was what propelled the Hoyas to the overall team win.
Smith had predicted before the meet that his team probably would not have any low finishers but that Georgetown’s pack would be dominant. That analysis proved to be spot-on, as runners-up Connecticut had two runners finish in front of Chambers but still had an overall team gap exceeding a minute, letting Georgetown seal a comfortable 10-point victory.
The men’s side also ran well, taking second even without All-American graduate student Mark Dennin, who sat out for training reasons.
“The Big East [championships] was our best race of the year,” assistant coach Brandon Bonsey said. “We’re getting better every two weeks when we line up, and that’s all you can ask. There were a few places where our execution wasn’t great, but those are fixable mistakes. The big thing is that our guys are very fit. So I’m happy with the way we ran.”
Georgetown was led by senior Andrew Springer, who took sixth in 24:42, and classmate Ben Furcht, who placed seventh in 24:45. Next across for the Hoyas was standout freshman Darren Fahy, who claimed 11th in 24:56 to turn in one of the fastest times by a freshman in program history.
Sophomore Miles Schoedler, meanwhile, had Georgetown's fourth-fastest run, finishing 18th overall with a time of 25:05. The Blue and Gray’s final scorer was sophomore John Murray, who took 25th in 25:17.
“Darren [Fahy] ran an incredible race — he was right with Andrew [Springer] and Ben [Furcht] with 400 meters to go,” Bonsey said. “Those guys are just a little older and were able to finish stronger. I think [Fahy] was a little too aggressive early on, so I think he can execute even better and run closer to Springer and Furcht at the end.”
“We’ve done the most volume of training of any team the program has had, and we’re now coming up on the switch from [regular season] 8k to [postseason] 10k, so with the longer distance, our training should really pay off,” Bonsey said.
Positive signs for the Hoyas include Springer’s return to form after a lackluster outing at NCAA Pre-Nationals two weeks ago and one of Furcht’s best races at Georgetown. With the possible return of Dennin in the NCAA tournament series, the Hoyas could compete for a high finish at the championship.
Both teams will be back in action at the NCAA Mid-Atlantic Regionals Nov. 9 in State College, Pa.