We are two weeks into the Syracuse Orange cross-country season and our two athletes in today’s profile have already taken home titles. Madeleine Davison has been the Orange women’s top runner the first two meets, including a win at the Harry Lang Invitational, and transfer Iliass Aouani took first this weekend at the Harry Groves Spiked Shoe Invitational.
Name: Madeleine Davison
Hometown: Wexford, PA
High School: North Allegeny
Notable 2015 Performances
Foot Locker National Championships- 28th place
Joe Piane Notre Dame Invitational- 2nd in open 5k race
Margo Malone says:
Maddie is an amazing runner. She is unique compared to many other top freshman in the country because she had the opportunity to race in collegiate races while completing high school in a homeschool program. This experience gives her confidence to race against the best. She is strong and ready to roll.
When I crossed paths with the Syracuse team on a training run this summer, it was pretty clear that Madeleine had quickly gained the respect of her teammates. Last year, she competed unattached and ran a reduced racing schedule. This allowed her to focus her training and as Margo mentioned she competed against more experienced runners. It’s not surprising to anyone in the Syracuse program to see Madeleine start the season as the top runner in the first two meets. She told me that she was looking forward to running at Penn State and she didn’t disappoint. The former Pennsylvania state champion in the 3,000 and 3,200 meters doesn’t seem to have any fear of being in the front and her immediate contributions will be important as the Orange women look to compete for an ACC title.
Name: Iliass Aouani
Hometown: Milan, Italy
Transfer from Lamar
NCAA Championships- 185th place
NCAA South Central Regional- 2nd place
Southland Conference Championships- 1st place
Wisconsin Meet of Champions- 119th place
Texas A&M Invitational- 4th place
Rice Invitational-2nd place
Martin Hehir Says:
From the weekend I spent with Iliass on his recruiting visit, I could tell he would be a perfect fit for the Syracuse team. He's super nice, loves the sport and transferred to Syracuse this fall so that he could reach his full potential and win NCAA titles.
Coach Chris Fox told me that he felt Iliass could be a top-5 runner for the Orange this Fall and Iliass’ debut performance at Penn State certainly points to that being a very strong possibility. With Justyn Knight and Colin Bennie sitting out, Iliass took first place ahead of Joel Hubbard and Philo Germano. If he is able to step into the #3 spot, it’s going to make Syracuse very tough to beat this year. Iliass brings sub-14 5k ability to Syracuse and while it’s not a perfect predictor, there is a strong correlation to success in that event carrying over to cross-country.
If you missed any of the previous previews, you can catch up here:
Sydney Leiher and Justyn Knight
Shannon Malone and Colin Bennie
Stephanie Bitcon and Philo Germano