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The Hawk News

The Student News Site of St. Joseph's University

The Hawk News

The Student News Site of St. Joseph's University

The Hawk News

All-Conference, all right

Women’s cross country places seventh at A-10 Championship

The Saint Joseph’s University women’s cross country team placed seventh in the Atlantic 10 Championship held on Oct. 29 in Richmond, Va. The Hawks were led by sophomore Lindsey Oremus and junior Cassidy Weimer, both of whom earned All-Conference honors for their performances.

“Overall, I think we actually ran really, really well,” Head Coach Melody O’Reilly said. “I’m very happy with how we performed individually and as a team… This year, we ran considerably faster overall and we’re missing a little bit in the middle of the team.”

Throughout the season, one of Oremus’ goals had been to break 18:00 in the 5k. Oremus came in 11th overall at the Championship race, finishing with a time of 17:42.7.

Photo courtesy of Tom Connelly
Photo courtesy of Tom Connelly

“It feels awesome,” Oremus said of reaching her goal. “Going into it and running 18:03 last year, I knew I was in better shape and I thought I was in a better spot, and the team as a whole, was in a better spot to do that. It was a personal goal to try to break that and make the All-Conference team. It was amazing when I crossed the finish line.”

According to O’Reilly, there also may have been another factor pushing Oremus to reach her goal of a sub-18 5k.

“We actually had a recruit come in on campus who had run that course and had run sub-18. And Lindsey, I made sure she knew that recruit ran that, just to kind of light a little fire,” O’Reilly said with a laugh.

Weimer also finished the race in under 18 minutes, the first time she had done so in her collegiate career. Weimer finished in 17:47.6, good for 12th place overall.

Weimer finished last year’s A-10 Championship with a time of 18:46.3; her time this year was an improvement of almost a minute, which O’Reilly was impressed by, though she did expect Weimer to perform well.

“[Weimer] had a 59-second PR, which was huge,” O’Reilly said. “So, she surprised me a little bit in being that far under [18:00]. But, at the same time, watching her workouts, I knew she was ready to do that. She’s been really, really consistent and strong in the workouts, so I knew it was coming.”

The A-10 honors the top 15 performers with All-Conference recognition. Oremus and Weimer’s finishes marked the first time since 2000 that St. Joe’s had a pair of All-Conference performances, according to SJU Athletics.

“I’m super excited about that,” O’Reilly said. “I think it’s fantastic that we’re to that place, one year later, we’re already starting to do things like that, and I anticipate that we will continue to do that and add more to that top 15 next year.”

Senior Sarah Regnault came in 20th overall with a time of 18:00.1, which was the exact same time as her performance in last year’s A-10 Championship. Regnault beat Davidson College’s Sarah Sears by 0.2 seconds for the top-20 finish.

Freshman Meridith Twomey and junior Caroline Keegan came in 66th and 80th, respectively, to round out the scoring for the Hawks.

The time spread between the Hawks’ number one and number five runners was about 1:33, something which both O’Reilly and Oremus hope will improve in the future.

“I know that Coach Mel really wants our spread to get better between our one through five,” Oremus said. “The [first-place University of] Richmond team, it was like 4.5 seconds. So that’s definitely something we have to fix, and I think it does start up front.”

Seven of the 10 Hawks racing in the Championship set or matched their 5k PRs: Oremus, Weimer, Regnault, Twomey, Keegan, freshman Emily Schaeffer, and sophomore Elaine Estes.

“To have seven personal bests, or one person tie out of the 10 runners that were there, I can’t ask for any more than that,” O’Reilly said. T

he Hawks will return to action on Nov. 11 in State College, Pa. when they race in the NCAA Mid-Atlantic Regional Championship. Though the Hawks aren’t ranked in the top 15 teams in the region, O’Reilly and Oremus believe the team will exceed expectations.

In fact, the Hawks weren’t ranked in the top 15 in the region last season, but placed 11th in the regional meet.

“I know that we’re faster, we’re stronger, and we’re more confident than last year, so I think we’ll surprise again this year,” O’Reilly said.

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