By Anthony Panciocco
The University of Maine’s men’s and women’s cross country teams visited Totman Field in Amherst, Mass. for the University of Massachusetts Invite Meet Saturday morning. Totman Field is considered one of the best cross country courses in the U.S. and was ideal for UMaine’s second meet of the year. The meet included the University of Vermont, University of Massachusetts-Amherst, University of Connecticut and Amherst College.
The men’s team ran well, edging out UMass-Amherst for second place by a score of 69-70. UMaine was led by senior Kelton Cullenberg, who won the meet with a blistering time of 19:15:12. Cullenberg has been an elite runner all four years and was also the first Black Bear to cross the line in their last meet.
Fellow senior Alexander Moser placed third overall in the meet to complete UMaine’s one-two punch on the men’s side. He finished at 19:26:99, a strong time. Senior Ryan Hardiman, junior Jarrod Lenfest and freshman Levi Frye were UMaine’s third, fourth and fifth finishers, respectively.
The UMaine women competed well in a strong field, taking fifth place in their race. The meet was dominated by Boston College, who scored just 23 points and blew out the rest of the competition. The Eagles were followed by UConn with 55 points, Vermont with 61, UMass with 81 and Amherst with 157.
UMaine’s top three runners finished within 15 seconds of each other. Sophomore Annabelle Wilson was the first Black Bear to cross, finishing with a time of 18:41:74 to lead UMaine for the second meet in a row. Juniors Carolyn Stocker and Rachel Wilkinson crossed next for UMaine 15 seconds after Wilson finished.
It was a strong day for UMaine cross country, with both squads showing promise.The men’s team has some experience up front with Cullenberg and Moser leading the pack, but their third runner, Levi Frye, is a freshman who looks to have great potential and some strong leaders to learn from. Their team features seven underclassmen and just three runners graduating next year.
The women have a much larger team, but will only lose three runners next year. The future is certainly bright.
The cross country teams return to Orono to take on rival University of New Hampshire Sept. 20 at 3 p.m.