BETHLEHEM, Pa. - Led by four runners who earned awards for finishing in the top 25 overall, Villanova put together a terrific showing against strong competition and finished second in the team standings at the Paul Short Run on Friday morning. In a field that included three nationally-ranked teams and several highly-ranked regional squads from around the nation, the Wildcats scored 115 points to finish behind Utah State (72) and Georgia (121) in a close race.
Junior Nicole Hutchinson (West Vancouver, B.C.) covered the 6,000 meter Goodman Campus Course in a personal best 19:50 and led Villanova with a runner-up finish out of more than 350 runners in the race. The first three Wildcats across the finish line were all part of the team’s large junior class, as Bella Burda (Pleasant Valley, N.Y.) placed ninth overall (20:09) and Kaley Ciluffo (LeClaire, Iowa) was 19th (20:28).
That trio along with freshman Rachel McArthur (Bristow, Va.) were recognized at the awards ceremony following the race. McArthur finished 24th (20:32) overall, while senior Katie Fisher (Uxbridge, Ont.) was 61st (20:55) to round out the team’s five scoring runners. The gap of just over a minute from first to fifth was particularly noteworthy for Villanova, which still has yet to field its full lineup in two early-season races.
Graduate student Maria Seykora (Broomall, Pa.) and sophomore Ann Campbell (Mission Hills, Kan.) came in 89th (21:09) and 106th (21:17), respectively, while freshman Alex Harris (Stony Point, N.Y.) finished 116th (21:24) and senior Rebecca Del Rossi (Canton, N.Y.) was 148th (21:37) in the field of 368 runners.
Friday’s race was a good chance for the Wildcats to once again get familiar with the Paul Short run course. This year is the 13th time in the last 15 seasons that Villanova has raced in the meet, and the Goodman Campus site will host the NCAA Mid-Atlantic Regional later this season.
Next up on the Wildcats schedule is the Penn State National meet on October 13.
COMPLETE VILLANOVA RESULTS
Team Scores (Top 10)
1. Utah State 72 2. Villanova 115 3. Georgia 121 4. Queen’s University 226 5. Princeton 232 6. Cornell 246 7. Duke 285 8. Arizona 313 9. Penn 320 10. Adams State 331
Nicole Hutchinson 2nd of 368 19:50 Bella Burda 9th 20:09 Kaley Ciluffo 19th 20:28 Rachel McArthur 24th 20:32 Katie Fisher 61st 20:55 Maria Seykora 89th 21:09 Ann Campbell 106th 21:17 Alex Harris 116th 21:24 Rebecca Del Rossi 148th 21:37