WASHINGTON - The American University cross country team will get its first look at the course for the 2018 NCAA Mid-Atlantic Regional Championship on Friday as the Eagles head to Penn State for the Harry Groves Spiked Shoe Invitational.
ABOUT THE MEET
- The meet will take place at Penn State's Blue-White Golf Course in State College, Pa.
- The women will open the meet with the 6,000-meter run at 5:30 p.m. followed by the men's 5.2-mile at 6:15 p.m.
- Teams: Cornell (W), Georgetown, Grove City, Navy, Penn State, Pittsburgh, Princeton (M), Saint Joseph's, Syracuse, West Virginia (W)
- Both the men and women will face several Mid-Atlantic Regional competitors, including six in the top 15 of the USTFCCCA (U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association) preseason regional rankings on the men's side and five on the women's.
- Among the highlights in the men's field is Princeton, who came in at No. 1 in the preseason poll. They were followed by No. 3 Georgetown, No. 4 Navy, No. 5 Penn State, No. 10 Pittsburgh, and No. 11 Saint Joseph's.
- The women will also face the top-ranked team in the region from the preseason poll with host Penn State, followed by No. 3 Georgetown, No. 5 Pittsburgh, No. 6 West Virginia, and No. 14 Navy.
- The AU men entered the season ranked 12th in the regional preseason poll while the women were 13th.
- A pair of veterans led the Eagles during the season-opener last weekend at the Bison Open in Lewisburg, Pa. On the women's side, it was senior Adriana Hooks who was back pacing the women's squad for the 11th consecutive meet dating back to the 2016 season with an 11th-place overall finish on the 4k course (14:19.0).
- Senior Liam Purdy took control of the pack for the men's team for the first time in his career with a 24th-place finish on the 6k course (19:33.50).
- Senior Brianna Belo, junior Arianna Lopez, freshman Clare Hernandez, and senior Kassidy Ayres rounded out the top-five finishers for the AU women while seniors Matthew Rainey and Ben Doiron, sophomore Max Lustig and junior Gerard D'Ambrosio III closed out the scorers on the men's side.
- The Eagles will return to the Blue-White Golf Course on Friday, Nov. 9, for the NCAA Mid-Atlantic Regional Championships where they will fight for spots at the NCAA Championships in Madison, Wisc., on Saturday, Nov. 17.
- The Eagles will put in a couple of hard weeks of training before returning to the course on Saturday, Sept. 29, for the Paul Short Invitational in Bethlehem, Pa., and the George Mason Invitational in Fairfax, Va.
For the latest on American University Cross Country, stay tuned to AUEagles.com and follow the team on Twitter @AU_TrackXC.