Men's Cross Country Looking For Fourth Consecutive Patriot League Title
Senior James Pearson
Oct. 28, 2011
ANNAPOLIS, Md. - The Navy men's cross country team will take its shot at claiming its fourth consecutive Patriot League title this Saturday at the conference championship meet in Bethlehem, Pa. This year's event, hosted by Lehigh, will begin at 11 a.m.
Navy and the Patriot League Championship
Navy is looking to join American (2002-07) and Army (1993-96) as third team to win at least four consecutive Patriot League championships. The last time the league championship was held at Lehigh in 2008, Navy won the first of its three straight titles as it tied with Army for the top spot.
The Mids claimed their first outright title in 2009 as they held off American, 34-57. Last season, Navy edged American again for the title by a score of 43-52.
Former Navy star Andrew Hanko (2011) won the last two Patriot League individual championships, while a Midshipman has claimed the conference's Rookie of the Meet award in each of the last five seasons.
Quoting the Coach
Coach Al Cantello's take on this weekend's Patriot League Championship...
"Because of the Army-Navy dual meet, we almost have to have a mid-season peak. So, I had to pull back the reigns a little this year and count the meets that we had as practice. But, it's still hard to be unemotional when you see a strange singlet out there and I'm telling them to hold back. It's going to be interesting, whether they bought into it and if we're going to peak at the end."
Navy and the USTFCCCA Regional Rankings
Navy enters the Patriot League Championship ranked fifth in the Mid-Atlantic region poll - the same spot in which it began the season. Navy has remained the highest-ranked Patriot League team in any region this season.
Princeton, Villanova, Penn State and Georgetown are ranked No. 1-4, respectively, in the Mid-Atlantic region. Princeton (No. 9) and Villanova (No. 16) are also both nationally ranked.
The Last Time Out
Navy captured its third consecutive Star as it topped Army, 19-37, on Oct. 14 at the West Point Golf Course. The Mids took the top-three spots as Cody Rome (24:21.4), James Pearson (24:25.2) and Robert Patterson (24:32) were the first runners to cross the finish line.
Rome Remains on Fire
Senior Cody Rome has been the Mids most consistent runner all season and has been the team's top finisher in all five meets in which he has competed.
In his last competition at Army, Rome took home the first individual title of his career and for his efforts, was named the Patriot League Runner of the Week, for the fourth time this season.
With four-career Patriot League Runner of the Week awards, Rome is now second to only Hanko for the most weekly awards in conference history.
After a week off, Navy will compete for a chance to go to the NCAA Championship when they run in the NCAA Mid-Atlantic Regional Championship on Nov. 12 in Princess Anne, Md.