School support no effect on team’s moral

By Melani Gomes
February 5, 2004

Photo courtesy of Tom O’Hora

Tom O’Hora says he was blessed; “blessed with an ability to win.”

O’Hora, Cabrini’s head cross country and track coach, has experienced many great opportunities with track and they have helped him reach where he is today.

A Pennsylvania Hall of Fame inductee in 1989, O’Hora said he “owes something for his success.”

O’Hora said, “It takes a special person to want to work so hard in a sport that does not get much attention.” O’Hora said that even at Cabrini, many students must accept challenges in life to be a “successful and complete person.”

O’Hora first started coaching in the high school level, at Holy Cross High School, in Delran, N.J., for seven years. Prior to O’Hora’s coaching, the school never had a winning team. During the seven years in N.J., O’Hora’s overall record was 70-14 in cross country, and 68-13 in track with one tie.

Cabrini hired O’Hora in 1982. “College is much different from high school,” O’Hora said. “In high school there are dual meets where you have a win and loss record. In college there are no win or loss records for either sport. Instead, there are weekly invitationals.” When comparing track to cross country, O’Hora said, “Cross country is more of a team sport, while track and field is more of an individual sport.”

CTC is the championship that a collection of 40 schools get together to compete. O’Hora said that since these schools are Division I, Cabrini does “not expect to win, but are just happy to win points.”

O’Hora explained that Cabrini also belongs to the Eastern College Atheletic Conference and must qualify throughout the season to do so. O’Hora said that the reason why they are so difficult is that they are only a notch below the standards for qualifying for the National Collegiate Athletic Association National Championship.

“In the past, we have had several qualifiers for both the ECAC and the NCAA Nationals. We have had about six or seven Cabrini athletes who have made All ECAC.”

O’Hora said as a goal for this season “We are trying very hard to re-build our team. We are off to a good start. We have some athletes who are expected to do very well this year.” One of those is captain Shaun Smith, a junior.

Smith said, “I think that Coach O’Hora is an excellent coach.

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Melani Gomes

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