Both the men’s and women’s cross-country teams had an outstanding start to their seasons this weekend at the Mount Saint Mary’s Duals. Both teams saw a complete sweep of the competition with perfect performances across the board.
The women’s cross-country team went 7-0 at the competition. The top five runners for the team were junior Therese Olshanski, who finished second with a time of 18:16.53, senior Sam Levy, who finished fourth with a time of 18:21.39, senior Rebecca Grusby, who finished sixth with a time of 18:24.49, junior Ariel Keklak, who finished 11th with a time of 18:30.73, and senior Kristin Meek, who finished 16th with a time of 18:46.06.
This top five was good enough to net perfect scores against American, Stevenson, Mount Saint Mary’s, and UMBC. The other three games were a little closer. Hopkins beat George Washington 19-44. They beat their in-state neighbors, Maryland, 21-40. And finally, they beat Georgetown by the tight score of 28-29.
In addition to the top five runners, two other Hopkins runners, sophomore Alex Ross and senior Caelyn Reilly, finished in the top 20. Three more runners, sophomore Arielle Summit, freshman Callie Jones, and freshman Stephanie Brown, finished in the top thirty. A total of 16 Hopkins runners finished in the top half of runners.
The men’s team went 6-0 with more incredible performances. The top runners for the men were senior Andrew King, who finished in first place with a time of 15:31.93, junior Jared Pangallozzi, who finished third with a time of 15:38.68, sophomore Sean Laidlaw, who finished fifth with a time of 15:41.98, senior P.J. Murray, who finished sixth 15:46.65, and junior Patrick Dye, who finished ninth with a time of 15:49.22.
Pangallozzi spoke about the performance. “It was certainly a great rust buster for me and it gives me confidence as training begins to pick up. I ran a much faster time this year than I did on this course last year, so hopefully that’s a good sign. The team did an awesome job of building off of each other throughout the race, and I think everybody is really excited after having such a strong opening. We all certainly recognize that the really hard workouts are still yet to come, but I think everyone is happy to start the season off with a bang,” he said.
Hopkins scored perfectly against George Washington, Georgetown, and UMBC. Against American, Hopkins won 17-44. Hopkins beat Stevenson 18-45. And Hopkins beat Mount Saint Mary’s 19-43.
Other top finishers for Hopkins included freshman Matthew Kleinman, who finished in tenth place, junior Connor Delahanty, who finished 12th, senior Aditya Joshi, who finished 13th, junior Declan Hines, who finished 14th, and freshman Ian Spears, who finished 15th. Senior Vipul Bhat also finished in the top-20.
The success at this meet clearly had a positive effect on the team. “I think this meet just generally got our guys pumped about the upcoming season. It’s good to be back out on the course and with such a strong core this year, it reaffirmed all the training we put in this summer. Obviously, the first meet of the year doesn’t have much bearing on how the season as a whole turns out, but little milestones are what keep you going when the end of the road is so far away,” said King.
Both teams now look forward to the Iona Meet of Champions on September 20th. King was clear about the team’s goals as they looked ahead to that meet. “At Iona we have a special goal: beat Bobby van Allen’s college time at Van Cortlandt. Nobody on our team has done it and we feel like this year it’s time to end that.”