Cross country runs in conference tournament

Emily Moore, Staff Writer

Saturday, the Pitt-Johnstown men’s and women’s cross-country teams competed in the 2017 Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference Championships at the University of California (Pa.)

Pitt-Johnstown women senior cross country runner, Tori Fulkroad placed fourth place to earn all-conference honors at the conference cross country championships. Overall the women’s cross country team placed 16th out of 18 teams.

Senior Kyle Zenchak has been a stand out on the men’s team this season, leading at the Carnegie Mellon Invitational Oct. 7 by placing 58th out of 208 runners to a 13th-place team spot out of 20 teams at the meet.

Zenchak placed 64th out of 146 runners to guide the Mountain Cats to a 14th-place finish out of 16 teams.

Before the conference championship, Zenchak said that he had to prepare doing multiple different workouts.

“For preparations, we continued to train well with workouts and long runs,” said Zenchak.

“We began to taper all of our running to be completely fresh for the conference championships.”

After last year’s finish in the invitational at 12th-place, and Zenchak placing 119 out of 134, he said their goal stays the same as previous invitational.

“Our goal is to always run the best race we can,” said Zenchak.

“This is my, and other seniors, last year, so we are trying to finish on a good note.”

Almost done with their season, Zenchak said that he and his teammates use races to help them learn.

The Mountain Cats placed in the top five in the three invitationals that they attended in September.

They placed second at the Saint Francis University  (Latrobe, Pa.) Father Bede Invitational, while Zenchak placed 15th out of all the runners.

The Mountain Cats placed fifth at the Juanita College (Huntington, Pa.) Invitational and second at the Saint Vincent University (Latrobe, Pa.) Invitational; Zenchak placed 14th out of 59 runners.

“We learn from all our previous races on how to run the smartest race possible,” said Zenchak.

“The great thing about our sport is that everyone competes at the same time, so we will try to beat as many runners as we can.”

The Mountain Cats have only the 2017 Atlantic Regionals at Lock Haven (Pa.) University, held on Nov. 4, and the 2017 NCAA Division 2 Championships (Evansville, Ind.), held on Nov. 18, left to compete after the conference championship.