Aaron Hostettler Staff Writer
The Eastern Connecticut State University’s Cross-Country team had an outstanding performance in their first meet of the 2019 Winter season on Autg. 31, at Keane State College in New Hampshire.
The Early Bird Invitational consisted of nine schools, held a 2-mile race for the girls, and a 5km for the boys (approximately 3.1 miles).
For the overall results, the Eastern Women’s team came in fifth place and the Eastern Men’s team came in third. Senior Maggie Dulak was the first Eastern girl to cross the finish line, with a time of 12:32. Dulak started running Cross Country for Eastern last year and has ran Track and Field since she was a freshman. Her successful performance at this meet indicates promising results for her final year as an Eastern student athlete.
Sophomore Ryan Escoda led the boys’ team to a strong finish, with a time of 16:24. Escoda was awarded “Rookie Track Athlete of the Year” by the Little East Conference this past Winter. His personal record for the mile was a 4:27, which he ran at the Yale University Invitational this past Indoor Track season.
“I think everyone did well coming out of this race. It was a nice start to this season, and there were a lot of good performances on the team,” said Jorich Swift, a Sophomore on the Men’s team. “My hope for this season is to better myself and try to start bridging the distance between myself and the top runners,” Swift continued.
The team’s next meet will be at the Massachusetts Dartmouth Invitational on Sept. 21. Up until then, the team will be put through a series of regorious workouts and long runs to prepare them for the upcoming 8km races, which consist of approximately 5 miles. Coaches Manizza, DeMarco, Thayer, and Hankins are working hard to make sure that everybody gets the right amount of training they need to continue having successful performances in the future. After performing significantly well in their previous race at Keane, there is much hope for the Eastern Cross-Country team’s performance this Winter season.