PHILADELPHIA – The Saint Joseph’s women’s cross country squad will head to the 2018 NCAA Mid-Atlantic Regional Championship this Friday, November 9. The 6k race is slated to begin at noon, hosted by Penn State University at the Blue-White Golf Course in University Park, Pa.

The top two teams and top four individuals receive automatic qualification for the 2018 NCAA Cross Country Championship, to be held on Saturday, November 18 in Louisville, Ky. Overall, the top two teams from each region, plus 13 at-large teams from across the country, will qualify for the national championship. After teams have been determined, 38 additional individuals will be selected to compete at nationals. A complete breakdown of the qualification process can be found by clicking here.

SJU’s top seven finishers from the 2018 Atlantic 10 Championship will represent the Hawks at the 2018 Mid-Atlantic Regional Championship: senior captain Lindsey Oremus (25th), senior captain Elaine Estes (35th), senior captain Lucy Harmon (44th), junior Emily Schaeffer (46th), junior Emily Bracken (61st), senior Sara Rankin (81st), and senior captain Britton Gagliardi (90th). Freshman Emily Dunn (96th), SJU’s #8 finisher from A-10s, will serve as the alternate.

Oremus and Gagliardi lead SJU with three regional meets apiece (’15, ’16, ’17) under their belts, while Estes (’17), Harmon (’17), and Bracken (’16) also have experience at this level. Schaeffer and Rankin will make their regional debuts.

2017 regional runner-up Villanova is ranked first in the Mid-Atlantic while defending champion Penn State, West Virginia, Princeton, and Georgetown round out the top five. 31 squads are scheduled to race and, sorted by starting box order, include Rider, Navy, Duquesne, Pittsburgh, Princeton, Delaware, Penn State, Seton Hall, Lehigh, Bucknell, La Salle, Mount St. Mary’s, Rutgers, Maryland-Eastern Shore, Georgetown, Loyola (Md.), Saint Francis (Pa.), West Virginia, Villanova, George Washington, American, Lafayette, NJIT, Temple, Marshall, Monmouth, UMBC, Maryland, Penn, and Towson.

The Hawks broke through with a gritty 13th-place finish in a field of 28 teams at the 2017 NCAA Mid-Atlantic Regional Championship last fall and return three of their five point scorers in Harmon (63rd), Oremus (79th), and Estes (123rd) as well as #7 finisher Gagliardi – all four of this year’s captains.

Oremus (season-best 22:16.9), Estes (22:37.0), Harmon (season-best 22:55.2), Bracken (22:56.2), Schaeffer (23:37.7), Gagliardi (24:13.8), and Rankin (25:17.8) all raced the Blue-White Golf Course terrain back on September 7 of this season for the Penn State Spiked Shoe Invitational.

Led by Oremus’ 25th-place finish, the Hawks are coming off of a 10th-place team finish at A-10s on October 27.

2017 NCAA Mid-Atlantic Regional 6k Times
Lehigh University - Goodman Campus
63rd – Lucy Harmon (21:33.1 PR)
79th – Lindsey Oremus (21:45.5)
123rd – Elaine Estes (22:29.6)
152nd – Britton Gagliardi (22:53.9)

2016 NCAA Mid-Atlantic Regional 6k Times
Penn State University - Blue-White Golf Course
45th – Lindsey Oremus (21:51)
147th – Britton Gagliardi (23:39)
161st – Emily Bracken (24:09)

2015 NCAA Mid-Atlantic Regional 6k Times
Princeton University - West Windsor Fields
44th – Lindsey Oremus (22:06.9)
80th – Britton Gagliardi (22:53.0)