PHILADELPHIA, Pa. - - On a course the Wildcats are very familiar with, both the men's and women's cross country squads ran to third place finishes on Saturday afternoon at the Philly Metro Championships.
The women were first to tackle the historic Belmont Plateau course, home of the Central Atlantic Collegiate Conference (CACC) Championships for the last few seasons. The 5K race featured some of the best teams the CACC has to offer, with perennial power Jefferson University besting the 10-team field. Division III Stockton University was second, just 11 points ahead of Wilmington. Fellow conference foes Bloomfield, University of the Sciences, Holy Family, and Caldwell finished consecutively behind the Cats.
Leading the way for the ladies was once again graduate student Rachel Jones, who clocked a time of 20:52.1 to place sixth. Junior Gabrielle Brown had a top 15-showing, placing 13th in a time of 21:41.2. Freshman Alexa Crowell was the next Wildcat to score for the Cats, finishing in a time of 22:09.7 which was good for 19th place. Classmate Julia Merritt finished 24th in a time of 22:44.0, while the final Wildcat to count in the points column was junior Tara Langan who placed 35th , with a time of 23:21.2.
In a highly contested men's race, which saw the first three teams separated by 20 points, it was CACC foe Jefferson University who once again, came out on top. Stockton placed second, while the Cats' 63 points placed them third, 19 points ahead of conference rival Bloomfield (82).
Mark Corrigan continued his torrid start to the season, as the junior placed third overall, finishing the 8K course in a time of 28:06.1. Close behind him was junior Miguel Suero, who ran a 28:33.6, finishing 7th overall. Also earning a top-15 finish was classmate Johnathan Avila, whose time of 29:12.6 was good for 11th place overall. Freshman Jacob Puharic was the fourth Wildcat scorer, as the first year runner ran an impressive 29:22.3 which placed him 16th. The final WilmU runner to score was Korey Jefferies, as the graduate student placed 28th overall in a time of 30:42.5.
Amani McMullen (39:31.4; 85th place) and Jayven Davis (39:45.5) rounded out the men's side.
Wilmington remains close to home next Saturday as both squads travel across town to take part in the University of Delaware Invitational #1. The race will be held at White Clay Creek State Park, which will play host to the CACC Championships for the first time later this fall. The women's race starts at 9:30 AM with the men's run to follow.