MANCHESTER, Conn. — The University of Saint Joseph (USJ) men's and women's cross country teams ran hard and ran well Saturday morning, finishing sixth and seventh of seven schools in the annual Trinity Invitational, held at Wickham Park.
Event: Trinity Invitational
Results: USJ Men – 6th of 7, USJ Women – 7th of 7
Location: Wickham Park | Manchester, Conn.
COACH QUOTE [Andrew Fink] "It was a fantastic day, a lot of it was just getting the opener [under our belt]. We just want to get the team to start the season. We have a lot of first-time runners that are just getting familiar with the college experience. Everyone ran super hard, we had great team chemistry and spirit. We just needed to get one under us, and now we can really start to prepare for the Blue Jay Invitational. I am super excited for next Friday."
THE RUNDOWN – MEN'S 5K
In the men's 5K, more than 100 runners competed for minimum points and bragging rights. The run came down to the wire as freshman Walter Wagude of Tufts claimed the victory in 16:21.20, just under a second ahead of the runner-up finisher, Travis Martin of Trinity College. Tufts placed five runners in the top-10 alone, and won the overall with just 27 points. They were followed by Trinity with 38 points, and Wesleyan with 69.
For USJ, junior captain David Kavanaugh (West Hartford, Conn.) impressed many by finishing in the top-30, earning an official Trinity Invitational t-shirt in the process. Head coach Andrew Fink called his run "unbelievable", and expects a very solid year out of his captain and We-Ha native. Kavanaugh was at one time a few spots back, but gained them in the homestretch to take 30th in 18:02.9, just under a second ahead of 31st (and missing out on a t-shirt). Freshman newcomer Braeden Laframboise (Southington, Conn.) turned heads with a 32nd-place finish in his first-career collegiate event. He crossed the line less than three seconds behind Kavanaugh in 18 minutes and five seconds flat. Freshman Patrick O'Connor (Cheshire, Conn.) finished 71st for USJ (21:11.1). It was good enough for sixth place of seven teams in the overall standings.
THE RUNDOWN – WOMEN'S 5K
The 73-runner women's 5K was flat-out dominated by junior Miranda Graves and Wesleyan, as she crossed the line in another stratosphere, finishing in 20:12.5, more than 25 seconds ahead of teammate and senior Emma Trapani. Wesleyan took the overall with 29 points, while Tufts was solidly in second place with 50 points. University of New Haven rounded out the podium with 91.
The Blue Jays were led to the line by junior captain Morgan Hall (Norfolk, Conn.), who finished in 26:13.1, good enough for 55th position. Juniors Emily Wassick (Granby, Conn.) and Kate Miranda (West Hartford, Conn.) rounded out the top-three finishers for USJ. Wassick and Miranda placed 60th and 64th respectively. The Blue Jays took seventh overall of seven schools.
The Blue Jays will be back in action next on Friday, September 17 for their lone home meet of the season, the annual Blue Jay Invitational, at 4:00 p.m., on the campus of the University of Saint Joseph.