Regular season ends for cross-country with dual fifth place finishes at Metropolitan Championships

The Seton Hall men’s and women’s cross-country teams ended their regular season this afternoon with the 2017 Metropolitan Championships at Van Cortlandt Park in the Bronx, N.Y. Both teams entered the meet off the back of three consecutive first place finishes, however, there would be no fourth straight win for either, as the two sides posted matching fifth place finishes.

The women’s team competed in a field of 14 teams and 129 runners. The Pirates finished just five minutes behind leaders Manhattan with a total time of 1:39:11.

Photo via SHU Athletics

Nothing changed at the front of the pack for the Pirates, who were led by Christiana Rutkowski, once again, with the redshirt junior taking fifth place with a time of 18:48.4. Rutkowski was unable to capture her fifth first place finish, but the finish itself means Rutkowski has secured top five status in every race this year.

Next to finish for the Pirates were Olivia Hernandez, Emily Johnson and Emily Hernandez. The trio took 28th, 31st and 34th place respectively, with only 17 seconds separating them. Kiley Britten scored fifth for the Pirates, finishing with a time of 20:42.8.

On the men’s side, the Pirates competed against teams from 10 other schools, with a total of 111 runners. Their total time over the five miles was 2:17:09, giving an average of 27:26 per runner.

Competing in his last regular season race, senior Jake Simon was the top performer for the men as he took 21st place with a time of 27:05.4. Just a few strides behind him was fellow senior Bryant Cordova, with Cordova finishing at 27:16.1, which earned him 26th place overall. Meanwhile, Brandon Guerrera finished third for the Pirates and 31st overall with a time of 27:31.2. The fourth and fifth place finishers for the men’s team were Jesse Southard and Richard Stephens, who gave times of 27:32.6 and 27:43.6, respectively.

The next cross-country competition is the most anticipated: The Big East Championships, scheduled for Saturday, Oct. 28 in Kenosha, Wisc. After that, the NCAA Mid-Atlantic Regional will occur on Nov. 10 in Bethlehem, Pa., with both teams hoping they can send representation to that big stage.

Robert Musantry can be reached at robert.musantry@student.shu.edu or on Twitter @rfmusantry.