STATE COLLEGE, Pa. - The Maryland cross country team culminated its season with a strong performance at the NCAA Mid-Atlantic Regional Championship Meet Friday afternoon, finishing ninth in the field.
“The team made some strong efforts over the course of this season to tackle each competition,” said head coach Andrew Valmon. “I appreciate tenacity shown by these seven young women today. Coach Matthew Jelley and coach Danielle Siebert did a great job getting our group ready to compete.”
The race reflected an overall pattern of improvement for the Terps throughout the course of the 2016 campaign, which saw the team win both of its early season meets. The squad’s average time of 21:52 was one of its best team averages in the past decade, and will set the stage for a continued rise for the Terps in seasons to come.
Junior Alexandra Lucki led the charge for Maryland with a 18th place overall finish. Her mark of 21:07 was over a minute faster than her time at the event last season (22:08), as she also improved 27 places from her 2015 finish. She earned All-Region honors for her efforts.
“Alex took a big step in the last 1000 meters of the race to secure her position in the top-25 of the field,” said Valmon. “It was exciting to see her and her teammates push themselves throughout the race.”
Senior Sydney Almeida turned in one of her best races ever as a Terp, posting NCAA Regional career-bests in both overall finish (55th) and time (21:55) to help pace the Terps.
Freshman Kathryn Gearhart capped off a promising freshman campaign as Maryland’s No. 3 runner, finishing in 22:00 to take 57th overall. Senior Alexa Squirini was right on her heels, crossing the line in 22:05 to post a 63rd place overall finish.
Freshman Caroline Augelli was the fifth Terp to finish, posting a time of 22:17 to finish 78th. Senior Charde' Barnes and sophomore Kiernan Keller rounded out the top seven, finishing 99th (22:40) and 107th (22:44) respectively.
Penn State won the regional championship, placing three runners in the top-10 including the race’s individual champion Tessa Barrett (20:00). Villanova (93 points) and Penn (99 points) rounded out the top-three.
Maryland will await for the NCAA’s at-large selections for the NCAA Championship meet, which is scheduled for Saturday, November 19.