MANCHESTER, N.H. - The Saint Michael's College men's and women's cross country teams both opened the season with sixth-place finishes among seven teams at Saint Anselm College's Shacklette Invitational on Saturday. The Purple Knight women scored 133 points to narrowly trail fifth-place Bentley University (126) and the host Hawks (124), while the men tallied 190. Stonehill College's men and women, ranked 24th and 21st, respectively, in the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA) national poll, swept the meet with 24 and 31 points.
Sophomore Abby French (Nashua, N.H./Academy of Notre Dame) turned in her fourth top-10 finish in seven career starts, taking eighth in 19:53 on the 5K course. Senior Roxy Withers (Hampden, Maine/Hampden Academy) was 24th at 20:46, and first-year Ellen Arvidson (New London, Conn./Saint Bernard School) debuted in 37th with a time of 21:23. Junior Emily Calder (Hopkinton, N.H./Hopkinton) was just behind in 41st by crossing in 21:29, and senior Leah Seften (Bolton, Conn./Bolton) placed 43rd in a PR of 21:55.
On the men's side, first-year Mike DeAngelo (Springfield, Mass./Springfield Central) paced the Purple Knights with a 47th-place finish at 30:09 during the 8K, and junior David Baird (Higganum, Conn./Haddam-Killingworth) took 50th in 30:28. Sophomore Tim DeCosta (Barnstable, Mass./Barnstable) was 52nd at 30:48, while classmate Mitch McDonald (Prior Lake, Minn./Prior Lake) was the first of three straight Saint Michael's finishers en route to taking 54th in 31:46 during his college debut. Junior Nathan Terry (Reading, Mass./Tilton School) was 55th at 32:17 in his initial collegiate race, edging out classmate Matthew Logue (Watertown, Conn./The Gunnery) by six seconds.
The Purple Knights finish out the month of September by heading to Middlebury College for back-to-back races, beginning with the Aldrich Invitational on Sept. 16. The men start at 1 p.m. and the women one hour later.