Typically the Syracuse Orange cross-country teams don’t face much competition when they travel East on Route 20 to the Harry Lang Invitational hosted by the Colgate Raiders. This year was a little different as Colgate will be hosting the 2019 Patriot League championships so a number of schools came out to get a preview of the course. The Orange were joined by the Boston University Terriers, Bucknell Bison, Lehigh Mountainhawks, Navy Midshipmen Binghamton Bearcats and Colgate and the young Syracuse runners performed well.
The Syracuse women scored 53 points which put them second to BU’s 26. Freshman Justus Holden-Betts took fourth in her first collegiate race to lead the Orange. Holden-Betts covered the 4.6k course in a time of 17:28 and she was followed by Kelsey Potts (8th in 17:44), Olivia Elston (9th in 17:50), Emma Wilson (10th in 17:51) and Ryley Higgins (22nd in 18:19). While it’s hard to compare times from year to year, the Orange were faster this year. This is always a good way to start the season especially when you’re looking at improvements from runners who will be pushing the top group.
Views from our season opener. pic.twitter.com/JdcuRJqWMF— Syracuse XC/Track (@CuseXCTF) September 8, 2019
Syracuse’s men won over Navy by a score of 31-44 with Noah Beveridge leading the way with a 2nd place finish. Beveridge’s time for the 6.4k course was 19:53 and he was closely followed by Stephen Schulz (3rd in 19:54), Nathan Lawler (4th in 19:55) and Matt Scrape (5th in 20:00). Junior Keith McAteer (17th in 20:48) was the final Orange scorer on Saturday and like the women the men were faster than in 2018. Some of this can be attributed to the tougher competition but Schulz was about 1:30 faster than last year and that’s the type of progression coaches want to see from their athletes. We knew Syracuse had a talented group of 2018 recruits and even though the other three sat out last season they are starting 2019 off on a strong note.
Syracuse will be back in action on Friday September 20th at the Coast to Coast Battle in Beantown. The Orange will be running their full squads as this meet will be their first opportunity to earn points towards NCAA at-large consideration and we’ll have more on the teams before that race.