NORLO PARK, Pa. – Penn State Brandywine sophomore Catharine Mooney (Garnet Valley, Pa./Garnet Valley) claimed the Penn State University Athletic Conference Women's Cross Country title, becoming the Lions' first-ever league champion on Saturday afternoon. Classmate Brian Abel (Amesbury, Mass./Amesbury) and freshman Alex Rosenberry (Etters, Pa./West Shore Christian) both finished in the top five of the men's 8K championship, pacing the Lion men.
Mooney ran away from the competition, finishing nearly two minutes in front of her nearest competitor. Not only was her time of 24:59 a team record, breaking the previous mark by 21 seconds, but was also believed to be a course and conference 6K record.
Mooney, who finished second at last year's championship, won her second meet of the season after claiming Brandywine's home invitational late in September. Joahiana Najunas was the runner-up, crossing the finish line 1:40 after Mooney.
Mooney, Abel and Rosenberry all qualified for the United States Collegiate Athletic Association National Championships as first team all-conference runners and will run in Virginia Beach on Nov. 8. Abel and Mooney will be making their second appearances at the national championship meet.
Abel ran the first sub-26-minute 8K in Brandywine history, breaking his own school record time. He finished in 25:55, six seconds off of championship pace to finish as the men's runner-up.
Rosenberry was the fifth runner to hit the finish line in a time of 26:10. That mark would have been a Brandywine record time prior to Saturday and is now the second-fastest mark in the team's history.
Alex Consadene (Andover, Conn./RHAM) and Stephen Heck (West Chester, Pa./Henderson) finished back-to-back in 13th and 14th places respectively. Consadene posted a time of 27:43, good for the sixth-fastest time in team history, while Heck ran to a time of 27:46, Brandywine's seventh-best mark.
Ryan Cassidy (Aston, Pa./Sun Valley) also posted a top-10 all-time mark as he placed 16th in the 43-runner field at 28:22.
Tyler Cameron (Pocopson, Pa./Unionville) was 23rd (30:14) with a new personal-best time, while Brendan Cleary (Chadds Ford, Pa./Garnet Valley) finished in 36:12. Angel Asomugha (Brookhaven, Pa./Sun Valley) also represented the Brandywine women, recording a time of 32:04, her top 6K time of the season.
As a team, Brandywine finished second in the men's standings, while Fayette won its fourth-straight championship.