By Kristina Soetje
Cross Country teams compete in last invitational before America East Championships.
This past weekend the men’s and women’s cross country teams ran in the Princeton Invitational, an annual event that invited more than 50 schools up and down the east coast to participate. The men’s team ran a distance of 8k, while the women ran a distance of 6k.
UMBC’s men’s team finished the Invitational in fifth place overall. Junior Hassan Oman crossed the finish line at 24:06, placing 4th. This beats Omar’s previous Princeton Invitational time of 24:21 that put him in 16th place and allowed him to beat the UMBC record time for the 8k run. Junior Austin Hayslett, the third UMBC runner to cross the line last year, was the second UMBC runner to cross the line this year and placed 28th at 24:47. Following behind him by one second in 29th place was senior Eric Schuler, who crossed the line at 24:48. Sophomore Jon Luckin then crossed the finish line in 58th place with a time of 25:11, and senior Noah Hutton finished in 83rd place with his time of 25:27.
Meanwhile, the women’s team placed 11th overall. The first Retriever to cross the finish line at 22:03 was sophomore Sophia Cologer, who placed 12th. Last year, the first Retriever to cross the finish line at the Princeton Invitational was senior Cody Mezebish, who placed 43rd with her time of 22:40. Junior Katie Govatos was the next to finish the race with a time of 22:33, placing 41st.
Junior Nicole Dawson, senior Julie Gessler, and junior Angelina Oputa finished the race soon after, respectively. Dawson placed 78th with a time of 23:01, Gessler came in 92nd place in 23:10, and Oputa crossed the finish line at 23:48 with a 142nd place finish.
Following the Princeton Invitational for UMBC is the America East Championships on Saturday, Nov. 1. The men’s and women’s cross country teams will travel to Orono, Maine, where they will run at the University of Maine, hoping to improve on their previous 5th place ranking from last year.