CHICOPEE, Mass. - Senior Mia Tompkins (Meriden, Conn.) bested a field of 48 runners to record her first career victory on the women's side and freshman Eric Knox (Bristol, Conn.) found himself on the podium with a third-place finish on the men's side to lead the University of Saint Joseph (USJ) cross country teams this past Saturday at the Blazer Classic Invitational hosted by Elms College at Chicopee Memorial State Park. The Blue Jays will be back in action next when they host the Blue Jay Invitational on Saturday, September 29th at USJ.
THE RUNDOWN - WOMEN
Tompkins toured the 6K women's course with a winning time of 24:45 for her first collegiate gold medal, finishing ahead of the second-place runner by 1:11. She averaged a blistering 6:39 mile pace. Western New England's sophomore Sam Lewis finished second with a time of 25:56 and Johnson & Wales' sophomore Kaylan Dunham completed the podium and finished third with a time of 25:57.
Western New England won the women's team event placing all five of its runners in the top-15 and finishing with a low score of 28 to record the victory. Johnson & Wales was right behind them in second place with 37 points followed by the host Blazers who finished third with 80 points.
FOR THE BLUE JAYS
- Senior Mia Tompkins (Meriden, Conn.) led the Blue Jays finishing the 6K with a winning time of 25:56 to post the individual victory.
- Junior Kristina Petit (Plainville, Conn.) recorded a top-20 individual finish, crossing the line in 18th with a time of 29:39.
THE RUNDOWN - MEN
Junior David Still from Mitchell College claimed the top individual spot in the men's 8K race after sprinting across the finish line with a time of 30:21. Western New England's freshman Anthony Spooner took the silver after finishing eight seconds behind Still with a time of 30:29 ahead of Knox from USJ who logged the bronze medal finish after turning in a time of 30:33.
Western New England also took the team title on the men's side placing all five of its scoring runners in the top-11 spots to post a team-low score of 37 points. The Golden Bears finished ahead of Dean College who finished runner-up with a team score of 58 points ahead of Johnson & Wales who rounded out the podium in third with 85 points.
FOR THE BLUE JAYS
- Freshman Eric Knox (Bristol, Conn.) set the new 8K school standard and bested his personal-best time by nearly two minutes with his time of 30:33 to place third out of 53 runners.
- Freshman Mario Manon-Porcella (Torrington, Conn.) was the second USJ runner to cross the finish line and was 36th with a 39:25 effort.
The USJ men's and women's cross country teams will be back in action next on Saturday, September 29nd when they host the Blue Jay Invitational on the campus of the University of Saint Joseph. The women's race is scheduled to start at 10:00 a.m. while the men will begin at approximately 11:00 a.m.