University At Albany Hosts 47th Annual Cross Country Invitational
ALBANY, N.Y. – The University at Albany will host the 47th annual Cross Country Invitational on UAlbany’s campus course on Saturday, October 19. The event kicks off at 10:00 a.m. with the Homecoming 5K – an open and alumni race featuring both men and women. The R.K. Munsey Men’s Championship 8K Race will follow at 11:00 a.m. Finally, the Bobbi Palma Women’s 5K Race will wrap up the event at 11:45 a.m.
This year’s field includes 10 total teams, up from the four that competed a year ago. The Vermont women are ranked 14th in the NCAA Northeast regional poll, and the Middlebury men rank ninth in the Division III national poll. UAlbany won both the men’s and women’s team titles last year, and saw UAlbany athletes Ethan Clary and Brittney Lane take the individual titles as well.
Not only will the meet host more teams than it did last year, but UAlbany will also unveil a brand new course at the competition.
The UAlbany men’s team is coming off a strong performance in their last meet at Lehigh University’s Paul Short Invitational, where they finished second overall in the Brown race. The men will look to build off of that performance as they attempt to defend their home course and the team title they won a year ago.
On the women’s side, UAlbany will be competing with a diminished squad, as the top eight women are traveling to Indiana this weekend to compete in the Pre-National Invitational. Three Danes will compete for the women, who, by and large, are primarily track & field athletes running in their first 5K.
Coach Jones has been pleased with the training progression he has seen since the last meet. He admits both teams have been dealing with some injuries that have created holes in the lineups. Jessica Donohue, normally UAlbany’s number four on the women’s team, and John DeLallo, the men’s number two, remain sidelined with injuries.
For those athletes competing at home this weekend, Coach Jones sees the race as a tune-up for the America East Conference Championship in two weeks. The determination of success for the season will be to see how the athletes’ performances at the Conference Championship meet compare to their performances at the Pre-Conference meet in September.