Cross country takes first at season’s final meet

The Binghamton University men’s and women’s cross country teams traveled to Van Cortlandt Park in the Bronx on Nov. 19 for their final competitions of the 2011 season, the IC4A/ECAC meet. The BU men’s team recorded its first-ever first-place finish in the IC4A University Championship, while the women placed 11th out of a total of 22 teams in the ECAC University race.

“I was proud of how well we focused and competed today,” BU head coach Annette Acuff said, according to a press release on www.bubearcats.com. “The team has grown a lot this year and we will reap the benefits next year.”

On the men’s side, Binghamton had five runners finish among the top 11. Out of 16 teams and 139 runners, the Bearcats finished with 35 points, outrunning Fordham University, which finished in second with 60 points.

The men entered the race having come off a 22nd-place finish at the NCAA Northeast Regionals hosted by University at Buffalo the weekend prior. A total of 33 teams competed and freshman Cal Michaels led the Bearcats with an 85th-place finish overall.

At the IC4A/ECAC meet on Nov. 19, BU freshman Collin Frost was the first Bearcat to cross the finish line, placing fourth and completing the 8,000-meter course with a time of 26:07. Frost’s fourth-place finish is the highest Binghamton has ever had at the IC4A Championships. Prior to Nov. 19, Adam Hill held the top spot for the Bearcats with a fifth-place finish in 2007.

Junior Anthony Gaetani finished fifth overall with a time of 26:08, followed by Michaels (26:15) and junior Vasili Papastrat (26:15) finishing seventh and eighth, respectively. Rounding off Binghamton’s top-five finishers was junior Jason Santos, who placed 11th with a finishing time of 26:21. The top five runners for the Bearcats crossed the finish line within 14 seconds of each other.

Fordham’s Julian Saad placed first overall for the men with a time of 25:28.

For the Binghamton women, graduate student Ashley Horton crossed the finish line first with a time of 18:42, which was good for 14th place out of 217 total runners in the 5,000-meter race.

Horton had finished in 104th at the NCAA Northeast Regionals the weekend prior, finishing one spot behind Binghamton junior Lindsay Raulli, who was the 103rd runner to cross the line. The women placed in 22nd out of 36 teams at the event.

Junior Rachel Miura (18:56) and Raulli (19:09) finished in 20th and 29th place, respectively.

Sophomore Caitlin Jelinek completed the race in 19:45. The fifth finisher for Binghamton was sophomore Carly Kiess, who placed 108th with a final time of 20:04.

University at Albany’s Kathryn Fanning won the individual title in the ECAC race with a time of 18:06. The Great Danes went on to win the team title with a score of 109. The Bearcats placed 11th as a team with a total of 237 points.