Women’s cross country defends championship title


Lauren Whelan, Sports Co-Editor

Making it the second consecutive year, the women’s cross country team placed first in the Patriot League Championships on Oct. 29, topping fellow league competitors. Christine Bendzinski ’18 led the way by taking the individual title with a time of 21:07 minutes, becoming the fourth runner in program history to earn such an accolade. Bendzinski was followed by teammates Kate Scott ’17, Sarah Chandler ’17, and Colleen Buckley ’19, taking second, third, and fourth respectively. Elizabeth Sheprow ’17, Anna Chiodo-Ortiz ’19, Margaret Thomson ’19, and Jenna Farmer ’19 joined the others in the top 20 overall to help the Orange and Blue to their championship title.

“I can’t identify a single ‘best’ part of the meet, because there are several aspects of the day that were amazing,” Sheprow said. “Finding out that Chrissy took the individual title and that Chrissy, Kate, Sarah, and Colleen took the first four spots in the race was an incredible moment, because those are both profoundly respectable feats. We knew that we had three strong front-runners in Chrissy, Kate, and Sarah, but it was so exciting to see Colleen right up there with them,” Sheprow said.

The team’s mentality was also reflected in the comments of Bendzinski, who attributed much of her success to her teammates as well.

“The celebration afterward, which we were able to enjoy with almost the entirety of our track and field team, was probably my favorite part. They were just as much a part of it as we were, as we had almost everyone come on their own to the meet to cheer. Being able to share the moment with them is the type of bonding experience that can’t be created artificially,” Bendzinski said.

Despite recapturing the championship title, the season is not over yet for the Orange and Blue as they look to continue their fight at the NCAA Mid-Atlantic Regional Championship. The team is working hard to prepare.

“We resumed practice the morning after the Championship meet and are determined to turn in a strong performance at the Mid-Atlantic Regional Championship. It’s back to “business as usual” as our coach Kevin Donner often says, but we fortunately have the memory of a successful Patriot League Championship meet to provide confidence and perpetuate our positive energy through the remainder of the season,” Sheprow said.

The Mid-Atlantic Regional Championship will take place at Penn State on Nov. 11.

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