MEET CENTRAL |LIVE RESULTS
PROVIDENCE, R.I. – The Providence College men’s and women’s cross country teams traveled out to Kenosha, Wis. for the BIG EAST Championships on Friday, Oct. 27. The races will take place at the Wayne E. Dannehl National Cross Country Course on Saturday, Oct. 28. The men’s 8,000-meter race will be the first race of the day at 11:00 a.m. CT. The women’s 6,000-meter race will then follow at 11:50 a.m. CT.
The women enter the meet looking to defend their conference crown. In the latest USTFCCCA poll, the women were ranked seventh and were the top ranked BIG EAST team. They will face stiff competition from both the Villanova Wildcats and the Georgetown Hoyas. The Wildcats are ranked 15th in the country while the Hoyas are receiving votes.
The women are bringing a well experienced team to this year’s BIG EAST Championships as six of the nine athletes have competed at the BIG EAST Championships and five have competed at the NCAA Cross Country Championships.
Graduate student Catarina Rocha (Peabody, Mass.), senior Brianna Ilarda (Perth, Australia) and senior Millie Paladino (Morgantown, W.Va.) will spearhead the Friars’ efforts at the BIG EAST Championships.
Rocha, a three-time All-BIG EAST selection, finished seventh on this course as a freshman in 2013. In the seasons since, Rocha has finished second and sixth at the 2014 and 2015 BIG EAST Championships. After redshirting last season, Rocha will look to stake her claim for the BIG EAST title.
Ilarda was the Friars’ top finisher at last season’s BIG EAST Championships when she finished third overall. Ilarda was the top Friar at Providence’s 2017 season opener at the UNH Dual Meet. Most recently, she has been the Friars’ second finisher at Boston College Coast-to-Coast Invitational and the Nuttycombe Wisconsin Invitational and has the talent to lead the Friars this weekend.
Paladino was sixth at last year’s championships. She was Providence’s top finisher at the Nuttycombe Wisconsin Invitational where she finished 17th against a deep, national-caliber field.
Sophomore Abbey Wheeler (Elmira, N.Y.), senior Mackenzie Barry (Mendham, N.J.) and freshman Maria Coffin (Annapolis, Md.) all have had strong seasons. Both Wheeler and Barry were All-BIG EAST selections last year when they finished eighth and 16th, respectively.
The Providence men enter the meet with a young team that is ready to compete with the conference’s best.
Senior Aaron Hanlon (Drogheda, Ireland) has been the top finisher for the Providence men this. He led the men at the Boston College Coast-to-Coast Invitational (24th) and the Nuttycombe Wisconsin Invitational. Hanlon will look to improve upon his 2014 result when he finished 14th.
Junior Marcus Karamanolis (Wellington, New Zealand) and junior Michael O’Leary (St. James, N.Y.) both look to make a jump at this year’s BIG EAST Championships.
Aside from junior Austin Scola (Medfield, Mass.), who finished 36th at the BIG EAST Championships last year, the rest of the team will be making their BIG EAST Cross Country debut.
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