Rutgers completes season with solid performance at IC4A Championship
The Rutgers men’s cross-country team finished its most successful season in years on Saturday with another great all-around performance.
The Scarlet Knights finished third out of 19 teams at the Intercollegiate Association of Amateur Athletes of America (IC4A) Championships held at Van Cortlandt Park in the Bronx.
They placed five of their runners in the top 30, with three finishing in the top 20 and two finishing in the top 15.
“Our performance was very good,” head coach Mike Mulqueen said. “We ran very tough and in a tight pack like we have all year.”
The Knights’ performance was about up to par with their result at last year’s IC4A Championships, where they finished second. And while they didn’t improve on that result in regard to placement, they did improve ever so slightly when it came to how fast they ran as a team.
Their total time was 2:13:16, three seconds faster than last year, and their average time of 26:26 was one-second faster.
It was Rutgers’ second-best placement of the season after their second-place finish at the Metropolitan Championships in October, which was also held at Van Cortlandt Park.
“They know that park and had two good races there this year,” Mulqueen said. “Several of the guys ran lifetime best times on that course on Saturday.”
Northeastern won the 8-kilometer race, while Fordham were the runners-up.
Leading the way for the Knights was sophomore Conor Murphy, who finished in tenth place with a time of 26:08. It matched his placement at the event last year.
Junior Trent Brinkofski and was not far behind, finishing in 15th with a time of 26:12, one spot higher than he did last year.
Sophomore Dominick Munson crossed the finish line next for the Knights. He finished 17th with a time of 26:25, which was a big improvement over his 37th-place finish a year ago.
After that, it was juniors Alex Livernois and Luke Wiley, who finished 24th and 29th, respectively. Wiley’s time of 26:47 was an improvement over his 73rd-place time of 27:26 last year.
Freshmen Andrew Comito and Nick Pschunder rounded out Rutgers’ top seven, finishing in 41st and 54th respectively.
Murphy, Brinkofski, Murphy and Livernois were named All-East University performers for their efforts.
The Knights competed in seven meets this season and finished well in all of them.
From climbing out of the cellar of the Big Ten for the first time to finishing in the top ten at the Mid-Atlantic Regional Championship for the first time in over a decade, the team had a very successful season.
“It was very enjoyable to watch the team keep improving all season,” Mulqueen said.
And improve they have. Many runners set multiple personal best times this season and the team as a whole ran better in meets than they did in previous years.
But more importantly, it sets the team up to do better in the future.
The Knights are only graduating one senior, and if they keep running the way that they did this season, then they should be able to place high in most meets and potentially win a few.
There’s also the fact that recruits are starting to take notice.
Rutgers hopes that they can haul in some of the top high school runners in the region, and their results this year definitely give them an incentive to come here and win.
Opposing coaches have already been impressed with their performances this year, so the bar is set pretty high for next year and beyond. Rutgers put their name out there in a big way, and now it’s time to look towards the future and do even better.
“This season means a lot going forward for this team,” Mulqueen said. “It shows that they can compete at a high level against good teams.”