The men's and women's cross-country teams got off to a great start this year, placing first and third, respectively, at Buffalo State's Daniel Walker Invitational last Saturday.
This was particularly impressive as the Blue Knights ran without their top 15 runners.
On the women's side, freshman Marissa Liberati's second overall finish at 19 minutes, 5 seconds led the Knights to victory. Geneseo had nine women finish in the top 15 and ended the meet with 27 points.
Maggie Morris, a graduate student racing in her first cross-country event after a spectacular women's lacrosse career at Geneseo, finished fourth with a time of 19:17.
Morris is taking advantage of a NCAA rule that allows an athlete to play another sport after their four years of eligibility have expired in their original sport; the same rule that allows former Duke basketball player Greg Paulus to play football at Syracuse this year. She is the first Geneseo student to play two sports in their career as a Lady Knight.
"Maggie is a natural runner," said head coach Mike Woods, who discovered Morris running with his team, not realizing initially that she wasn't actually on the team. "I thought she was one of my runners so I pulled my car up to talk to her and I realized she wasn't ... she was running right there with my girls."
Several other first-year runners also ran well. Brigid Heenan placed sixth in 19:35, Emily Sullivan was seventh in 19:44 and Danae Polsin crossed eighth in 19:51.
The men's team did not fare as well, but made a strong third place finish with 67 points, just one point behind second place Fredonia.
Once again, Woods said he was impressed with some of his new runners, especially sophomore Andrew Corcorran, who transferred from UMass-Amherst. Corcorran finished second with a time of 26:32, ahead of Division II All-American Ben Hahn of Edinboro University.
Senior Tim Kramer, who placed 13th in 27:17, and freshman Tyler Schwab, who finished 15th in 27:20, were the next top runners for the Knights.
The Blue Knights will get another chance to show off their talent as the squad splits for meets at Penn State on Friday and Brockport on Saturday.
At Penn State, top runners will take on Big 10 and Big East schools like Michigan State, Ohio State, Georgetown and Villanova.
"This will be a real test," said Wood, "… and should show us how good we really are."