PHILADELPHIA – The Saint Joseph’s men’s cross country squad is set to race the 2017 Atlantic 10 Cross Country Championship this Saturday, October 28. Hosted by George Mason University at the Oatlands Plantation in Leesburg, Va., the five-mile race is scheduled to begin at 10:00 a.m. The Hawks, who finished fifth a year ago, were predicted to place fifth this fall according to the A-10’s preseason poll, with voting conducted by the league’s 14 head coaches back in late August.
The race will be streamed live and free of charge on the Atlantic 10 Network, weather permitting.
The Hawks have finished as one of the top-three teams in the Atlantic 10 six times in the last eight years, including a pair of first-place finishes (2009, 2015), a pair of second-place finishes (2012, 2013), and a pair of third-place finishes (2011, 2014).
With a talented, experienced group headed down to Virginia, head coach Mike Glavin, now in his 29th season, believes that although the field will be as competitive as ever, his Hawks have the potential to break through.
"I would like to see two guys in the top 10," said Glavin. "That would be hard to do. It's not going to be an easy one, but I think it could happen."
The beauty of this year's squad is the depth factor, where anyone can step up on any given race day.
The 10 Hawks selected to represent SJU at the 2017 A-10 Cross Country Championship are graduate student tri-captain Dan Savage, senior tri-captain Collin Crilly, senior tri-captain David Dorsey, senior Anthony Morelli, juniors Jack Daly, Shawn Hutchison, and Will Sponaugle, and sophomores Josh Clark, Colin Gallagher and Zach Michon.
Saint Joseph’s returns three scorers from last season’s A-10 roster in Savage (17th), Clark (23rd), and Dorsey (29th) in addition to Crilly, SJU’s #7 finisher. SJU will look to fill the vacancy of graduates Jimmy Daniels (24th) and John Mascioli (37th), who finished as SJU’s #3 and #5 runners.
Savage has been on the A-10 roster all four seasons of his collegiate career, scoring twice. In addition to that experience, he is coming into the race off of a collegiate-best 8k time (24:42.8) at the Princeton Invitational on October 14. Savage has finished as SJU’s top runner in all three of his races this fall. Clark (25:07.7) and Michon (24:55.1) are coming into Saturday's race after running collegiate-best 8k times at Princeton.
The All-Conference team consists of the top 15 finishers, while the Most Outstanding Rookie award is given to the highest-placing freshman in each race, earned by Clark last fall.
The Hawks raced the Oatlands Plantation course as part of the George Mason Invitatational back on September 30; SJU won the 7.993k race in a field of eight teams, which included conference foes Duquesne, George Mason, and George Washington.