Franek, Fuller Capture Individual Wins; Cross Country Looks Sharp in Season Opener
Aug. 31, 2007
LOCK HAVEN, Pa - Sophomore Bridget Franek (Hiram, Ohio), and junior Brian Fuller (Camp Hill, Pa.) captured individual titles as the Nittany Lion cross country teams dominated the competition at the Dolan Duals, hosted by Lock Haven University. Both teams ran shorter distances than what is typically contested, as the women covered a 4000-meter course, and the men ran 6000-meters.
Franek posted the wire-to-wire win, breaking the tape in a quick 14:03.73. The victory marks the second year in-a-row that Franek took top honors in the season opener at Lock Haven. Classmate Cheryl Spring (The Woodlands, Texas) placed second overall in 14:20.77, while redshirt freshman Leah Rosenfeld (Ridgefield, Conn.) finished third in 14:26.23 in an impressive first collegiate cross country effort.
Juniors Claire Percival (Sarnia, Ontario) and Kathryn Fitzgerald (Pittsburgh, Pa.) rounded out the top five finishers, taking fourth and fifth, respectively, in 14:33.12, and 14:48.28. Washington University of St. Louis transfer Beth Herndon (Fort Wayne, Ind.), who ran unattached but will suit up for the Lions indoors, finished in sixth in 14:50.21, with Claire Berryman (Morgantown, W.Va.) on her heels in seventh in 14:51.97. Overall, the Nittany Lion women captured the first 16 spots in the finish order.
After running as a tight pack for the first half of the race, Fuller and teammate Teddy Quinn (Rush, N.Y.) broke away from the field to finish first and second in 18:13.91, and 18:14.07, respectively. Freshman Lucas Zarzeczny (Pittsburgh, Pa.) posted an outstanding effort in his first collegiate appearance, hanging with the leaders to finish third in 18:15.42. Juniors Dennis Pollow (Ransomville, N.Y.) and Dennis O'Connor
(Philadelphia) also ran strong, taking fourth and fifth in 18:27.10, and 18:34.29.
Junior Tyler McCandless (Bath, Pa.) posted a time of 18:40.59 for sixth, while classmate John Mahoney (Richboro, Pa.) finished seventh in 18:43.57.
The Lions will be off until September 22, when they travel to the Bronx, N.Y. for the Iona Meet of Champions at historic Van Cortland Park.