WASHINGTON – After taking the last few weeks off from competition, the American University cross country team is back on the course this weekend at Saturday's Paul Short Run, presented by ASICS and hosted by Lehigh in Bethlehem, Pa.
ABOUT THE MEET
Boasting approximately 6,000 athletes from nearly 450 colleges and high schools from across the country, the Paul Short Run has established itself as one of the largest cross country meets in the U.S.
American will be one of 43 teams in the men's college gold 8,000-meter race at 11 a.m. on the Goodman Campus Cross Country Course, which also includes three Patriot League competitors. The women will follow at 11:45 a.m. in the 40-team field in the gold 6k race alongside four PL opponents. The Eagles' will also face a pair of nationally-ranked teams in the women's race with Utah State and Georgia, who came in at No. 14 and No. 26 in the latest USTFCCCA (U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association) poll, respectively.
Men's Gold Race Field Highlights
Army West Point (Patriot League), Boston University (Patriot League), Lehigh (Patriot League, #11 Mid-Atlantic Region), Penn (#5 Mid-Atlantic Region), St. Joseph's (Pa.) (#9 Mid-Atlantic), La Salle (#13 Mid-Atlantic), and Monmouth (#14 Mid-Atlantic).
Women's Gold Race Field Highlights
Army West Point (Patriot League), Holy Cross (Patriot League), Navy (Patriot League, #10 Mid-Atlantic), Lehigh (Patriot League, #12 Mid-Atlantic), Utah State (#14 NCAA), Georgia (#26 NCAA), Penn (#5 Mid-Atlantic), West Virginia (#6 Mid-Atlantic), Maryland (#11 Mid-Atlantic), and Rutgers (#15 Mid-Atlantic)
Five other Patriot League programs will also be represented in the men's and women's brown races with Boston University (women), Bucknell, Colgate, Holy Cross (men), and Lafayette.
- This is the second consecutive season that the Eagles have been featured in the Paul Short Run. Last year, five personal records (PR's) highlighted the men's performance en route to a 16th-place finish while the women were led by seven PR's as they finished 29th as a team.
- On the women's side, senior Adriana Hooks will look to lead the team for the 14th consecutive meet dating back to the 2016 season. She led the team earlier this month at Penn State's Spiked Shoe Invitational (Sept. 7), placing 20th overall in the prestigious field with a final time of 21:59.80 on the 6k course.
- Freshman Clare Hernandez will also be back on the line after stepping up as the second AU finisher during the Spiked Shoe Invite. She placed 44th in the field during her debut 6k race with a final time of 22:24.10.
- Junior Arianna Lopez, senior Brianna Belo, and sophomore Shelbi Wuss rounded out the scored finishers for the Eagles their last time out and will retake the line on Saturday alongside senior Kassidy Ayres, junior Katelyn Deibler, and freshman Elise Hooker.
- The men have seen two different frontrunners in as many races, with senior Liam Purdy taking the helm for the Eagles during the season opener at Bucknell before classmate Ben Doiron took the reins at the Spiked Shoe Invite. Doiron and senior Matthew Rainey led AU at Penn State earlier this month with top-30 finishes, finishing in 22nd and 26th, respectively.
- Purdy, sophomore Max Lustig, and junior Gerard D'Ambrosio III will all return to action after scoring for the Eagles at the Spiked Shoe Invite, along with junior Caleb Brown, freshman Aidan Caggiano, sophomore John Pagliaro, and sophomore Michael Weidenbruch.
For the latest on American University Cross Country, stay tuned to AUEagles.com and follow the team on Twitter @AU_TrackXC.