Cross country has PAC championship in sight

By Katie Clark
October 27, 2006

Both men’s and women’s cross country teams are finishing up their season in the hope to take home the PAC championship and make nationals. The cross country team has worked throughout their season in reaching many of their goals. Both returning and newcomer runners have improved as a team, for cross country is actually “team” sport.

The cross country team is a division III team. The men’s team consists of 10 runners and the women consist of 13 runners. Their home track is the Belmont Plateau. They have run there a total of three times this season. Mostly they travel around Pennsylvania to different schools between 30 minutes to two hours away. Junior Chris Sweeney leads the men’s team while junior Carolyn Roberts leads the women’s. Both runners have earned their title of top runners through numerous times of leading their team to victories throughout their years in running.

Even though there are two captains for the teams, cross country is not just an individual sport. It actually gives the meaning to a “team” sport. “You don’t just need five people, you need five good people. You are as good as your weakest link,” coach Tom O’Hora said. Unlike other sport teams, cross country doesn’t have the jealously of others being better.

“I do cross country because it forces you to work hard even off season, and I like how it is so much of a team sport. You can not work on your own,” junior runner, Justin Walsh said. It is more of a bonding experience.

The team’s overall goals for this year is to win the PAC and make it to nationals. In the past years Cabrini’s cross country team has won 13 conference championships and has earned nine PAC titles.

The PAC is the big event in cross country. “For PACs I am expecting the men’s team to see the top three and the women’s team to see the top five,” manager and assistant coach, Robert DeVasto said.

Even though their other meets previous to the PAC is more of practices for Cabrini, the team has earned some record showings within this season. On the men’s team Walsh and Sweeney, succeeded in numerous meets beating different records set in the past for Cabrini, beating their own goals and giving Cabrini its best showing within six years. On the women’s team, Carolyn Roberts has the top runner position and has set some records for the women’s team and has also lead the Cavs to many overall victories.

Since O’Hora assigns each runner his or her own goals and times to meet before each match, the team has a very diverse set of goals among themselves. They each have their own set times to beat for each meet. This gives each runner ambition to run to their best of their ability at each meet.

The runners also have their own goals for themselves. They know what they want to get out of their season. “My goal is to have both men’s and women’s team make it to nationals and perform well,” Roberts said. Her goal was the most common response. Nationals are what the team works for throughout their season.

The cross country team is in the process of building their team to make the championship. They all have their set goals to conquer this year. The coach even has his goals for the team for now and the future. “I want to see my team survive this season, do well at PACs, graduate, get good jobs and have loving families,” O’Hora said.

The Loquitur welcomes your comments and questions in this story. Please send your comments to The editors will review your comments each week and make corrections if warranted.

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Katie Clark

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