Penn State National Canceled Due to Weather
LOCK HAVEN, Pa. - Though snow, rain and mud rarely stop cross country runners from racing through a course as planned, on Friday the Penn State National Invitational was canceled due to weather. Instead of just heading home, 18 of the original 29 teams scheduled to compete traveled about an hour northeast to compete at Lock Haven University. The school regularly hosts cross country meets, and so was able to arrange for the women to run their 6k course at 2 p.m. The Bulldogs finished in 11th place.
It was snowing in Pennsylvania when 12 Bulldogs arrived on Thursday, and they slowly jogged the course, assuming that they would be competing the next day. Just as they were getting on the bus to go to the race on Friday, they were told that it was canceled because of the high number of power outages in the University Park, Pa., area. There were trees down on the course, and it was judged unsafe for the runners.
Some teams left, but the other 18 traveled to Lock Haven, Pa. to compete on the West Branch Cross Country Course. West Virginia, which is ranked 3rd in the national Division I USTFCCCA rankings, won the meet with 27 points; Ivy League rivals Cornell and Penn finished fourth and eighth, respectively. It was flat, snowy and muddy, but the Bulldogs still managed some good moments.
The team had a very low spread again (the time between the first Yale finisher and the fifth): only 35 seconds. This is a good sign that the team was working together throughout the race, and that the runners can support each other so that everyone is at the same level.
Yale's freshmen had another good race, with Nihal Kayali as Yale's first runner in 22:25, and Elizabeth Marvin as Yale's third in 22:54. Marvin was back competing this weekend after sitting out the Harvard-Yale meet.
Sophomore Anne Lovelace was the second Bulldog to cross the finish line, in 22:35, and rounding out the Bulldogs' top five were seniors Stephanie Pearl (22:55, right with Marvin) and Alexandra Cadicamo (22:59).
"We did relatively better than we did at our last race," said senior captain Stephany Reaves, "But we're not quite where we need to be; we're not yet as good as we're capable of being."
Now that the Bulldogs are done with their regular season, only championship races loom ahead. The Heptagonals Championships will be held at Van Cortlandt Park in New York City on Oct. 30.
Report by Kyle Eichner '12, Yale Sports Publicity