NEWPORT NEWS, Va. – Following his brilliant performance at the 2019 Paul Short Run on Saturday morning, Saint Joseph's men's cross country senior captain Zach Michon has been selected the Atlantic 10 Performer of the Week, the league office announced on Tuesday afternoon. The Performer of the Week honor marks his first of the season and third of his career.
In an immense field of 380 racers, Michon took home a remarkable 21st-place finish in a collegiate-best time of 23:53.3, the first sub-24:00 8k of his collegiate career and a PR by 46 seconds. The senior used a 4:48.4 mile average to seal the top 25 finish and the PR, which stands as the fastest time ever by an SJU runner over Lehigh's 8k course.
"In this race in particular, the placement in the beginning is really important," said Michon following his race on Saturday. "One of my goals going in was to put myself up front so I could stay with that lead pack. Throughout the race, I just kept hanging on. I picked out a few in the crowd that I wanted to keep up with to gauge where my race was. I really wasn't sure how fast I was going until I came through 5k at about 14:55. Once I hit that, I knew it was going to be fast. I just kept my head down and kept grinding through it. Coming down that last straightaway and seeing that time on the clock, I was just ecstatic. I got that second wind to carry me through."
Michon and the Hawks are off from outside competition this weekend but will return to action next weekend, splitting up to race the Penn State National Invitational in State College, Pa. on Friday, October 18 and the Lafayette Leopard Invitational in Easton, Pa. on Saturday, October 19. Michon will race at Penn State.