2019 NEAC Women's Cross Country Preseason Preview

2019 NEAC Women's Cross Country Preseason Preview

LATHAM, N.Y. - Runners from 11 North Eastern Athletic Conference (NEAC) teams will begin racing this weekend as the 2019 women's cross country season gets underway. SUNY Poly will be looking to repeat its success from 2018 when the Wildcats won their first conference championship. Teams will also face some new competition in Penn State Harrisburg as the Lions return to the NEAC from the Capital Athletic Conference (CAC). In addition to a full slate of races in the coming months, all 11 teams will compete in the 2019 NEAC Women's Cross Country Championship on November 2 at SUNY Cobleskill.

Cazenovia College
Head Coach: Bill Houser, 7th season
2018-19 Postseason: 2nd Place Finish
Key Returners/Runners to Watch: Jamie Leone, Brooke Newton
Key Losses: None
Coach's Season Outlook: 2019 is a rebuilding season after losing 8 runners from last year’s teams. We will be focusing primarily on individual gains and best times and rebuilding to a more competitive team for the 2020 season.

Gallaudet University
Head Coach: Byron Moore, 6th season 
2018-19 Postseason:
10th place at NEAC Championships
Key Returners/Runners to Watch:
Sierra Pratt, Taylor Nguyen, Fatuma Ali, Hannah Wetzel
Key Losses:
Maria Guzman Mejia
Coach's Season Outlook:
Gallaudet's women's cross country team returns a large nucleus of its squad from last season with an added year of experience in tow. Sophomore Sierra Pratt is GU's top returner as she placed 26th at the 2018 NEAC Championships last season. Senior Fatuma Ali and junior Taylor Nguyen provide the veteran leadership this squad needs while sophomore Hannah Wetzel, coming off a tremendous rookie season with the track team, should be in the mix. Several newcomers, including Cassie Friday, should make an immediate impact as GU aims to improve on their 10th place showing at last year's conference championships.

Keuka College
Head Coach: Kyle Dacey, 2nd season
2018-19 Postseason:
3rd at NEAC Championships
Key Returners/Runners to Watch:
Kaylie DeSorbo, Bayli Fugle, Aubrey O'Connor
Key Losses:
None
Coach's Season Outlook:
Keuka College will look to continue to grow in 2019. The Wolves return three runners who earned all-conference honors last season. Kaylie DeSorbo looks to continue to lead the team. The freshmen led the way in most of the races last season.

Lancaster Bible
Head Coach:
Ryan Gehman, 3rd season
2018-19 Postseason:
8th out of 11 teams at NEAC Championships
Key Returners:
Junior - Judith Breeze
Runners to Watch: Sophomore - Amanda Hay
Key Losses:
Kaylee Boger, Lydia Dice
Coach's Season Outlook:
The Chargers return junior Judith Breeze who finished 11th at last season's NEAC Championships, but the rest of the squad is young. Lancaster Bible will look to use the early season races as a good test of where they are, and hope to be in contention at the NEAC Championships in early November.

Morrisville State
Head Coach:
Derek Powers, 21st season
2018-19 Postseason:
7th at NEAC Championships
Key Returners/Runners to Watch:
Sydney O'Dell, Miranda Wright, Anna Raymond
Key Losses:
Raylene Wade - all-conference
Coach's Season Outlook:
Sydney O'Dell and Miranda Wright have returned in good form and Anna Raymond is coming back cautiously from a hamstring injury. New runner Veronica Alinskas will help the team and seniors Annie Marchese and Maura Hager will be looking to move up and be in the very important 5th spot. Transfer Becca Randall, and returners Kaitlyn Mulwane and Emliy Cheney give the team depth as many other schools in the conference only have 5 girls in the early going.

Penn College
Head Coach:
Nick Patton, 5th season
2018-19 Postseason:
4th at NEAC Championships
Key Returners/Runners to Watch:
Katie Plankenhorn
Key Losses:
 Sidney Trunzo
Coach's Season Outlook:
Somewhat of a young team, but there is a good amount of experience and leadership. Looking to be competitive.

Penn State Abington
Head Coach:
Jim McClernand, 3rd Season
2018-19 Postseason:
Three Nittany Lions Finished at NCAA Regional
Key Returners/Runners to Watch:
Alexa Jenkins
Key Losses: Claire Reeves
Coach's Season Outlook:
Our freshmen will be a welcome addition to the team, adding depth and talent. Our returning runners will complement them with experience and leadership. We are hoping to add a few more runners before the season begins to fill out the roster and compete for a high finish at conference championships.

Penn State Berks
Head Coach: Katie Scheetz-Jones, 8th Season
2018-19 Postseason:
9th at NEAC Championships
Key Returners:
Asia Dibari, Karly Emmert
Runners to Watch:
Molly Derleth, Erin Boyer, Arabella Cairnie
Key Losses:
Mikaela Smith
Coach's Season Outlook:
The Penn State Berks women's team is made up of two returning runners and the rest are all new faces. Even though the team is young, they are an enthusiastic group and hope to be in the top five this year. 

Penn State Harrisburg
Head Coach: Danielle Lynch, 7th Season
2018-19 Postseason:
CAC Cross Country Championships
Key Returners/Runners to Watch:
Neeyah Turner (Jr.), Aiyala McPhee (So.), Alexandria Morrison (Fr.)
Key Losses:
Sephora Senestant
Coach's Season Outlook:
Penn State Harrisburg returns to the NEAC for the 2019 season after five years of competition in the Capital Athletic Conference (CAC). The Lions will look to top returners in junior Neeyah Turner and sophomore Aiyalah McPhee to lead the way this fall. Freshman Alexandria Morrison could also make an immediate impact after contributing to New Jersey track & field power and multiple-time state champion Winslow Township the past four years. “We are excited to return to the NEAC for cross country and are eager to showcase our talents,” said head coach Danielle Lynch regarding the upcoming campaign.

SUNY Cobleskill
Head Coach:
Mitchell J. Tomaszkiewicz, 27th season
2018-19 Postseason:
5th at NEAC Championships
Key Returners/Runners to Watch:
Natalie Honken, So., 1st Team All-NEAC 2018; Emily Pahl, Fr., All-Colonial Conference XC Team 2018; Ashley Kubet, So., transfer, Roberts Wesleyan All-Colonial Conference XC Team 2015, 2016, 2017
Key Losses:
None
Coach's Season Outlook:
The Fighting Tigers will return six letterwomen from the 2018 team to go with eight new recruits and will be looking to improve on their fifth place NEAC finish in 2018.

SUNY Poly
Head Coach:
Bill Tylutki, 16th Season
2018-19 Postseason:
NEAC Champions
Key Returners/Runners to Watch:
Lauren Phettleplace, Jalize Majia-Perez
Key Losses:
Kassidy Eng
Coach's Season Outlook:
We expect our team to be contenders.

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The North Eastern Athletic Conference (NEAC) has 12 NCAA Division III member institutions which include: Cazenovia College, Gallaudet University, Keuka College, Lancaster Bible College, Morrisville State, Penn College, Penn State Abington, Penn State Berks, Penn State Harrisburg, SUNY Cobleskill, SUNY Poly, and Wells College. Associate members are: Alfred State (M Lacrosse), Cedar Crest College (W Swimming), College of Saint Elizabeth (M Tennis & M Volleyball), D’Youville College (W Lacrosse), Hilbert College (M&W Lacrosse), Medaille College (M&W Lacrosse), Rutgers University – Camden (M Golf), SUNY Potsdam (M Volleyball) and Wilson College (M Volleyball). The NEAC has also partnered with the North Atlantic Conference in the sport of men’s tennis and women’s tennis. For more information, please visit: www.neacsports.com.