Cross Country Teams Gear Up For SUNYAC Tournament

SUNY New Paltz’s Men’s and Women’s Cross Country teams are fast approaching the end of the fall 2012 season.

On Saturday, Oct. 27, both teams will travel upstate to Fredonia, N.Y. to compete in the SUNYAC Tournament.

Head Coach Michael Trunkes said he has been anticipating the SUNYAC Tournament, and has been on top of both teams about both their academic performance as well as their running performance.

“[They’ve been] getting plenty of rest and making sure they’re on top of  school work so they’re not stressed out the week before a big competition,” Trunkes said.

After the women finished fifth and the men finished ninth last postseason, Trunkes said he expects both teams to enter the tournament with confidence because of the performances they have had so far this season.

“I think we will have strong performances from both the men and women’s teams,” Trunkes said. “They’ve had a wide variety of competitive race opportunities. Each race is a learning experience as well as a chance for the body to adapt to the physical and mental stress of racing. Our hope is that these races have prepared our runners for optimal performances at championship events.”

Second-year runner Terisa Woych said she is looking toward the tournament with anticipation.

“I’m definitely excited,” Woych said. “The girls’ team has been putting in some really solid workouts and mileage, and the results are showing in our races. It’s exciting to be able to really stand up against some of our tougher rivals, namely Oneonta and Plattsburgh.”

Woych said that one of her personal goals is to complete a 6K race in under 23 minutes. Her current time is 23:50.

“It’d be pretty huge for me to accomplish that, considering I’m only a second-season runner,” Woych said.

To prepare for this specific SUNYAC Cross Country Tournament, Woych said that both teams have changed their workout routines.

“Coach [Trunkes] is having us cut down on our mileage pretty significantly. I’ve gone from nearly 70 miles a week over the summer to no more than 50,” Woych said.

Also competing at the SUNYAC Tournament this year is third-year runner Omar Griffin. Griffin transferred from Baruch College at the end of last year, and this is his first year running with the New Paltz Men’s Cross Country team.

“I’m extremely excited for the upcoming SUNYAC championship meet,” Griffin said. “Both teams have been racing phenomenally this season, so I hope we can continue to progress and make a strong showing in Fredonia.”

Cait O’Connor