MANCHESTER, N.H. – Racing without its senior captain Kerry Phelan (Peabody, Mass.), the women’s cross country team finished in fifth place at the Shacklette Invitational Saturday afternoon with five runners finishing in the top-30.
Finish: Merrimack College (5th/8)
Location: Saint Anselm College | Manchester, N.H.
What They Said
Head coach Chris Cameron, “We had to sit out two of our top-seven due to injuries, which made this one tough. Our one-through-five racers kept a really tight pack, but its only going to have to get tighter as the competition is really stiff this year. We’ve got two hard weeks coming up and then another race so by then we will be in even better shape then we were today.”
How It Happened
After a solid sophomore season that saw her record four top-50 finishes, junior Claire Aalerud (Winchester, Mass.) got her third season off to a good start in being the top individual finisher for Merrimack on Saturday, placing 22nd with a time of 20:06. With the focus on running as a pack, sophomore Maddie Mercado (Palenville, N.Y.) finished right behind in 23rd with a time of 20:10. Following her up in 24th was senior captain Kristin Schmidt (Athens, N.Y.) with a time of 20:12.
In her first race as a Warrior, freshman Sophie Gorton (Plymouth, Mass.) placed 26th with a respectable time of 20:19. Another freshman put up a quality time in her debut race, as Jackie Coscia (Scituate, Mass.) rounded out the top-30 with a finishing time of 20:42.
Quality debut races were a theme among the women as yet another freshman, Lindsey Bjorkman (Mansfield, Mass.), had a strong finish, placing just one spot outside the top-30 and also putting up a time of 20:42.
How They Finished
1. Univ. of New England (56)
2. Stonehill (59)
3. American International (84)
4. Assumption (100)
5. Merrimack (125)
6. Southern New Hampshire (130)
7. St. Anselm (140)
8. St. Michael’s (198)
The Warriors race again on Saturday, Sept. 19 when they travel to North Dartmouth to take part in the UMass Dartmouth Invitational.
Mike McMahon has covered Merrimack College for The Eagle Tribune since 2006 and he also has been a senior writer at College Hockey News since 2005.
You can follow Mike on Twitter @MikeMcMahonCHN and you can follow the site @TheMackReports.