Freshman religious studies major Eddie Penetar is the first men’s cross country runner to earn the runner of the week title.
Placing first out of 60 runners at the Mule/Falcon Classic in Allentown on Saturday, Sept. 15, Penetar led the Cavaliers to a first place overall win. So far this season, he has placed in the top five in all of the three invitationals that the team has competed in.
The freshman athlete comes from Bishop O’Hara High School in Scranton, Pa. where he medaled at the All-States track and cross country. His senior year he was named ‘runner of the year’ by the Lackawanna High School League.
Penetar has been running since he was in seventh grade.
Penetar said that his running times have greatly improved since high school. At this time his cross country team ran a 3.1 mile race whereas college races are five miles.
“I never ran a five mile race before college, but I made a smooth transition,” Penetar said. “I feel I am stronger with longer races.”
The young runner feels he gets his motivation from his teammates.
“My teammates keep pushing me. I’m happy with the team’s performance. We win as a team,” Penetar said.
Up next for Penetar is the Philly Metro Meet at the Cavaliers home course at the Belmont Plateau at Fairmount Park on Saturday, Sept. 22.
A big meet for Penetar is the Paul Short Invitational at Lehigh University where the team will run against Division I colleges. The meet will take place on Friday, Sept. 28. The course at Lehigh is also the course where Regionals will take place. This is an important meet for Penetar to get used to the course to do well at Regionals in mid November.
Penetar’s goal of the season is to make it to Nationals at the end of the season.
“I’m going to have to work hard, but I hope to make it,” Penetar said.