The Fordham cross country team ran on Saturday at the NCAA East Regional against 37 other teams from all across the Northeast region. The men’s team went up against the likes of top-ranked teams in the NCAA, including seventh-ranked Iona, eighth-ranked Columbia and 14th-ranked Syracuse. Providence won the women’s race, placing five runners in the top 20 and easily beating out second place Dartmouth by 40 points.
The men placed 24th overall, racing seven team members at Van Cortlandt Park. Junior Jonathan Annelli, who has consistently been one of Fordham’s top runners this season, came in first for the Rams and 78th overall with a time of 31:55 on the 10k course. Sophomore Mike Turi came in 25 seconds later with a time of 32:21.
The men’s competition was very tough this year and, though Fordham entered Van Cortlandt with experience, there was little chance of beating some of the best cross country teams in the nation. Ultimately, Fordham faced five other teams that received a bid for nationals this Saturday.
The women faced similarly tough competition against nationally ranked opponents on Saturday. Fordham’s first finisher was Senior Anisa Arsenault, who came in 94th overall with a time of 22:15 on the six kilometer course at Van Cortlandt. Senior Christina Vivinetto followed just 17 seconds behind with a time of 22:32, taking the 124th position. Missing top runner Sarah Glockenmeier, Fordham’s next two finishers were a pair of freshmen, Brianne Roche and Ariana Bottalico. The two finished just seven seconds apart with times of 23:08 and 23:15, respectively.
The women’s competition featured second-ranked Providence College as well as 12th-ranked Dartmouth and 19th-ranked Syracuse.
As the cross country team winds down its season with one more competition, the team has definitely put in a lot of work this past fall getting to where it is now.
“Personally, it took me a while to get used to the training; I think I’m still adjusting to it.” Bottalico said. “But I learned a lot and am realizing that it’s all manageable — it just takes time.”
Roche echoed similar words in regards to her first few months as a Ram. “I am really happy to say that I think all aspects of my transition have gone very well so far.”
With indoor track starting soon, the freshman will look to different training methods and changing weather as challenges for the next season.
“Track and cross country are two different sports and so one’s training and race strategies are different too,” Roche said. “That will take a little time to adjust to.”
The final cross country event for Fordham, the ECAC championships, will take place this Saturday at Van Cortlandt Park.