2007 Women's Cross Country Year In Review
June 11, 2008
The Saint Joseph's University women's cross country fielded a young and energetic crew, building for the years to come. Along the way, coach Kevin Quinn found impressive performances from the younger ranks and a positive sign for the future from the 2007 campaign.
In the Haverford Time Trials, seven Hawks ran from 11th to 18th places, six (Annie Cushing, Jessica Di Cicco, Laura Faller, Andrea Florida, Christina Morelli and Amy Rhein) of those running together in times of 20:46-20:48. Juli Stensland was 18th in 21:01 while Katie Pencek finished a season best 27th in a time of 22:14.
The next week at Van Courtladt Park for the Ram Invitational, the Hawks finished third in a race that saw freshman Aimee Chegwidden (ninth/19:40) lead Saint Joseph's in the absence of Florida. Rhein was just two places behind in 11th with a time of 19:47 while Morelli completed another 16th place finish in a time of 19:58 over the five-kilometer course.
Florida, a previous two-time All-Atlantic 10 Cross Country runner, returned to lead the SJU contingent at the Spiked Shoe Invitational at Penn State two weeks later. Her 25th place performance saw her complete the six-kilometer race in 23:23. Following Florida was Chegwidden (31st/23:43) and Rhein (35th/23:52), which helped lead the Hawks to another third place team finish.
Another two week break saw Saint Joseph's travel to Lafayette for the Leopard Invitational. Although the Hawks finished sixth, Florida was the top Hawk in her best race of the season, placing sixth in a time of 21:23 for six kilometers. Chegwidden (21:48) was again second for the Hawks as her 17th place finish earned her A-10 Rookie of the Week honors. Stensland was the third best SJU harrier in 33rd place with a time of 22:15. Cushing was three spots off of Stensland in 36th with a time of 22:20.
Saint Joseph's came home to host the Atlantic 10 Championships at Belmont Plateau in a torrential rain storm. Florida (19:14) again earned Atlantic 10 All-Conference honors for a third straight season in her 12th place finish. Chegwidden's 30th place finish saw her complete the five-kilometer course in 20:04. Cushing had her finest race of the season with a 39th-place finish with a time of 20:21, helping guide the Hawks to an eighth place finish.
Two weeks later Saint Joseph's hit the trails again at Lehigh for the NCAA Mid-Atlantic Regionals. The Hawks would put together a 17th place showing with Florida leading SJU for the fifth time in the 2007 season with her 47th place performance in a time of 21:48. Chegwidden was the only other Hawk harrier to be in the top 100, as she ran the course in a time of 22:34 for 90th place.
For the last race of the season, Saint Joseph's made a trip back to Van Courtlandt Park for the ECAC Championships. After Florida (30th/18:45), Chegwidden ran the five kilometer course in 19:31 for 56th place. Stensland was the next best Hawk after Chegwidden in 64th place in a time of 19:43 for her highest team finish in 2007. Rhein (68th) was the only other Hawk to break 20-minutes, as she ran 19:46.
Overall the season was a tough one for the Hawks in a rebuilding year, especially after losing the services of senior captain Adriene Beltz due to injury. Quinn looks forward to an infusion of new talent to mesh with the veteran corps for a successful 2008 campaign.