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Track Spotlight:
Men's Harriers Finish Sixth at CACC Championships

Saturday, October 23, 2004

By Bob Heller
USIP Sports Information Director

In one of the strongest fields ever at the Central Atlantic Collegiate Conference cross country championships, the USP men's cross country team recorded a sixth place finish, with four of the Devils top five runners recording personal best times.

This year's field saw 17 runners finish the 8,000-meter Belmont Plateau course in under 30 minutes, with eventual champion Felician College having all seven of their runners run sub-30 on the afternoon. Felician won the title with 32 points while Nyack College was second with 57. Goldey Beacom College took third with 83 points and New Jersey Institute of Technology was fourth with 116. Holy Family University was fifth with 154 points, ten ahead of the Devils who finished with 164 points.

Nick Barger (Fr., Our Lady of Lourdes HS/Stormville, NY) paced the Devils with a personal best time of 30:56.41 finishing in 26th place. Joseph Holton (Jr., Archbishop Ryan HS/North Wildwood, NJ) was the next USP finisher, coming in in 30th place with a time of 31:19.43, also a personal best. Right behind Holton was Mitesh Patel (Fr., Point Pleasant Boro HS/Point Pleasant, NJ) with a personal best time of 31:23.22 (31st place).

Vladimir Mezhiritskiy (So., Northeast HS/Philadelphia, PA) and George Strock (So., Blue Mountain HS/Schuylkill Haven,PA) rounded out the Devils top five. Mezhiritskiy had a season best time of 32:36.98 (37th place) while Strock was 40th with a personal best time of 33:22.51. Ryan Pell (So., West York HS/York, PA) (41st place, 34:38.59) and Ivan Sergeyev (Jr., Hunter College HS/New Rochelle, NY) (43rd place, 35:18.68) completed the USP finishers on the afternoon.

Felician coach John Brennan earned Coach of the Year honors while the Team Sportsmanship Award went to Nyack College. Both awards were voted on by the coaches. The Newcomer of the Year award went to race champion Walter Tum of Bloomfield College who set a meet record with a time of 26:37.55.