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Merrimack Women (Fifth), Men (Sixth) Open Cross Country Season at NE-10 Preview

Photo: Merrimack Athletics

EASTON, Mass. – The Merrimack College women’s cross country team opened up the 2016 season at the Northeast-10 Preview Meet at Stonehill on Saturday morning, getting strong performances from newcomers to lead the Warriors to a fifth-place finish in the first meet of the season.

The Basics (Women)
Results: Merrimack
– (5th/7)
Top Finisher:
Maddie Mercado (20th – 20:02)
Stonehill College |Easton, Mass.

What They Said
Head coach Chris Cameron, “It was a good day, we ran in a tight pack, but we need to move the pack’s finish up more as they season goes on. We’re still dealing with a couple injuries that could potentially be in our top-seven, so once we’re back at full strength hopefully that will help.”

How It Happened

  • Junior Maddie Mercado (Palenville, N.Y.) lead the way for the Warriors in the first meet of 2016 after a strong sophomore campaign, finishing 20th out of 94 at the NE-10 Preview Meet at a time of 20:02 to record the best finish for Merrimack on Saturday.
  • The Navy and Gold saw great signs for the future at the Stonehill-hosted meet as they received impressive performances from their underclassmen on Saturday morning, with five of their top-six finishers being freshman or sophomores.  The Warriors also displayed their program-instilled pack running, with their top-four finishes placing in the 20th-25th slots.
  • Sophomores Sophie Gorton (Plymouth, Mass.) and Jackie Coscia (Scituate, Mass.) were two of the five, as Gorton recorded the second-best finish for the Warriors just behind Mercado at 28th (20:10.9). Coscia finished fourth for Merrimack in 25th-place at a time of 20:19.5.
  • Freshman Sara Tarascio (Southbury, Conn.) delivered a strong performance in her debut meet as a Warrior, finishing third for Merrimack and recording a top-25 finish in 24th-place with a time of 20:18.6.

The Basics (Men)
Results: Merrimack
– (6th/7)
Top Finisher:
Keith Steinbrecher (5th – 26:09)
Stonehill College |Easton, Mass.

What They Said
Head coach Chris Cameron, “We sat out quite a few men today in our first meet dealing with some early season injuries. A couple of those guys are potential top-runners for us, so that kind of effected the team and we didn’t have as tight enough a pack as we need to. Its early and we still have a long way to go so with some hard work over the next month we’ll get where we need to be.”

How It Happened 

  • Merrimack saw its best performance come from junior standout Keith Steinbrecher (Wading River, N.Y.), ashe cracked the top-five in his first race of the year with a fifth-place finish in the 91-man field. Steinbrecher would post a time of 26:09 in the 8K race.
  • Steinbrecher was joined by fellow juniors Niall Coughlin (Castleton, N.Y.) and Christian Gentile (Melrose, Mass.) in Merrimack’s top finishers, with Coughlin posting a 16th-place finish at a time of 26:48.3 for the second-best finish for the Warriors. Gentile would rank fourth for Merrimack, finishing 35th at a time of 27:44.9.
  • Senior James Wegman (Sandwich, Mass.) continued the consistent performance he displayed last season at 2016’s first meet, finishing third for the Navy and Gold at 32nd-place with a time of 27:40.1.
  • Sophomore John Sava (West Newton, Mass.) registered his fourth top-50 performance of his young career after recording three of the like as a freshman last season. He finished 37th for the Warriors with a time of 27:53 at the NE-10 Preview Meet.

Up Next
The Warriors return to action in two weeks on Saturday, September 17 when they take part in the Kirsh Cup at the Hopkinton Fairgrounds in Hopkinton, N.H.. The meet will serve as the NCAA Regional Preview Meet. 

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