WESTFIELD, Mass. – Mount Holyoke College notched an outstanding day of competition at the 2018 James Earley Invitational, hosted by Westfield State University at Stanley Park.
In what would end up being the Lyons' best race of the season thus far, the squad's goal in the varsity event was to earn 10th or better, which they surpassed by earning third on the day. Last season, the team was 21st of 34 squads at the Earley Invite. In the sub-varsity event, the team focused on a fifth or better finish, bettering that by taking second overall. The squad also had a goal of averaging sub 21:00 collectively, hitting that once again by averaging 20:46.
Leading the effort in the varsity race was sophomore Simone Jacob (San Francisco, Calif./San Francisco University HS) who was 19th overall with a finish of 19:31.76 for a new personal best time. Rookie Sydney Nash (New Hartford, Conn./Enfield) crossed the line in 23rd with a mark of 19:37.86 – also a new personal best – while senior captain Corrin Moss (Columbus, Ohio/Columbus Alternative) was close behind in 29th with a personal best time of 19:47.43.
Rookie Sophia Gronbeck (Westfield, Mass./Westfield) was next across the line, earning 34th overall with a personal best of 19:52.10. She was followed by senior captain Hannah Gershone (Minnetonka, Minn./Hopkins), who posted a time of 19:56.51 (also a personal best) to earn 36th overall. First year Jamie Day (Greenfield, Mass./Greenfield) placed 40th with a time and personal best mark of 20:00.07, while sophomore Meryl Phair (Stockbridge, Mass./Monument Mountain Regional) concluded the team scoring in 49th with a season's best time of 20:14.82.
Junior Emma Raney (Palo Alto, Calif./Palo Alto) also competed in the varsity race, earning 73rd overall with a seasons-best time of 20:47.34.
In the sub-varsity event, first year Sarah Hyde (Arlington, Mass./Arlington) led the effort with a third-place finish. She crossed the line with a personal best time of 20:05.80. Senior Emsie Cronin (Ledyard, Conn./Ledyard) was close behind in sixth with a personal best mark of 20:24.49, followed by junior Michelle Serrano (Los Angeles, Calif./West Adams Preparatory), who took 10th with a personal best time of 20:38.27.
Rookie Katie Milligan (Scituate, Mass./Scituate) was 14th with a time of 21:02.93 (also a personal best), while classmate Natalie Rodman (Upton, Mass./Nipmuc Regional) was 20th, also notching a personal best with a time of 21:19.09.
First year Sophia Anderson (Morrisville, Vt./Peoples Academy) also achieved a personal best on the day, taking 21st with a time of 21:23.45, while classmate Sammi Craig (Austin, Texas/Hyde Park) earned 33rd with a personal best of 21:46.11.
Rookie Amanda Kearney (Teaneck, N.J./Teaneck) posted a season-best mark of 21:55.35 to earn 37th, while classmate Charlotte Lindblom (Takoma Park, Md./Albert Einstein) posted her personal best of the season with a time of 22:15.32 – good for 52nd. First year Molly Lukiwsky (Barkhamsted, Conn./Northwestern Regional) was 58th with a personal best time of 22:25.02, while sophomore Olivia Wrobleski (Fall River, Mass./Bishop Stang) took 62nd on the day with a time of 22:29.49.
The focus of the day was to go out confident and aggressive, which was accomplished throughout the lineup. The concern was to stay connected as teammates rather than sticking to specific packs, which worked out well in both 5k races.
In the varsity race, Smith College was the overall winner, notching 92 points. Trinity was second with 118 points, followed by Mount Holyoke (131), Division II College of Saint Rose (133) and Worcester State (135) rounded out the top five.
For the sub-varsity event, Worcester State took the team victory, followed by Mount Holyoke. Smith was third, followed by the host Owls in fourth and Division II St. Michael's College in fifth.
Mount Holyoke returns to the course next Sunday when it travels to Bryn Mawr College to compete in the 2018 Seven Sisters Championship. Action begins at 10am.