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Rutgers Cross Country Geared up for 2012 BIG EAST Championships
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PISCATAWAY N.J. — (October 25, 2012) – The Rutgers men’s and women’s cross country teams head to Van Courtland Park in the Bronx, N.Y., on Friday, Oct. 26 to compete in the 2012 BIG EAST Championships. The Scarlet Knights will face off against 14 men’s teams and 15 women’s teams in the meet, which Villanova swept last season.

Both RU teams enter the meet not having competed since running in the Princeton Invitational on Oct. 14, although the Scarlet Knights have enjoyed plenty of success this season. The men’s squad earned a second-place finish at the Father Lebeer S.J. Invitational on Sept. 22, while the women won the Monmouth Invitational (Sept. 15) and finished second at the Metropolitan Championships (Oct. 5).

The women’s squad will look to crack the top-10 in the conference after finishing 10th last year in the six-kilometer meet. Leading RU last season was junior Briana Demming (Webster, N.Y.), who finished 58th overall. Junior Ashley Deckert (Newfield, N.J.) and sophomore Allison Payenski (Whitehouse Station N.J.), finished 77th and 78th, respectively.  

Pacing the men’s team en route to its 11th overall finish last season was junior Chris Banafato (Bridgewater, N.J.), who finished in 78th place. Sophomore Chris Defabio (Millington, N.J.) and junior Chris Richburg (West Orange, N.J.) finished 85th and 89th, respectively, last season in the eight-kilometer course.

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