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Struggles continue to brew for both cross country squads

By Sean Wixc1lliams - SPORTS EDITOR

The Hofstra cross country teams had difficulty keeping up with the competition at Lehigh University over the weekend, as the men’s and women’s teams finished 31st and 40th, respectively, in fields of 40 in the Paul Short Run.

On the women’s side in the 6K, junior Becky Celorio found herself in the familiar position of leading the team, running a 24:07.

“Becky ran well. She ran significantly better than she did at Van Cortland [two weeks ago],” said coach Vince Giambanco.

Junior Lisa Eberwein was a minute behind Celorio, good for a personal best, while Eva Holtermann, a senior, ran a season-best 25:36.  Freshman Emily McLean ran a 25:16. Coach Giambanco was optimistic about the team’s performance, especially in regard to Eberwein and McLean, who he said were “continuing to improve.”

“I anticipate Becky continuing to run up in the front, I would like to see that kind of pack of four moving up together. I think they could all make pretty big improvements throughout the season,” Giambanco said.

Bucknell University won the overall race on the women’s side, with Amy Regan, from the Stevens Institute of Technology, taking first.

Runners on the men’s side performed slightly better in the 8K, led by freshman Dan Barlev. The New Jersey native ran a 26:15 to finish 88th. He has been the first-place finisher for the Pride in every race this season. Alan Hetherington, also a freshman, ran a personal best 26:34.

“We had pretty good performances up front from Dan and Alan, pretty consistent with what they’re doing,” said coach Giambanco.

Jack Finlayson ran a 27:11 to finish 188th. The sophomore had an injury a few days before, which Giambanco believes accounts for his subpar performance.

Rodney Chirchir struggled after suffering a fall in a race two weeks ago. The talented freshman has yet to live up to his potential for the Pride. 

“Rodney went out pretty aggressively in the race and tapered in the later stages. If we can get him up with Dan… we’ll do pretty well,” Giambanco said.

The coach dismissed any potential injury concerns, saying that “little things come up… now I feel like we’re really healthy.”

Also of note was Riley Leder, a sophomore who is not competing with the team this year but who broke his personal best by 40 seconds, putting him “right around Alan’s time.” Giambanco is confident that Leder’s return will help pace the Pride next year.

The teams look forward to racing at the Princeton University Invitational on Oct. 18.

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