@AU_TrackXC Travels to Princeton to Close Regular Season

Junior Adriana Hooks finishes at the Mount St. Mary's Duals

WASHINGTON - The American University cross country team is set to close its regular season schedule on Saturday as the team heads to Princeton, N.J., for the Princeton Invitational. The men will be the first to take to the line at the West Windsor Fields with the 8,000-meter run at 9:30 a.m., followed by the women's 6,000m run at 10:30 a.m.

The 24-team field will feature several Mid-Atlantic Region teams, which the Eagles will face early next month at the NCAA Mid-Atlantic Regional Championships. Included among that number is fellow-Patriot League foe Lehigh.

The Eagles enter the weekend with some momentum, after both teams landed in the regional rankings for the first time this season, as released by the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA). The men currently hold their highest regional ranking since 2014 at No. 11 while the women made their first appearance in the regional poll since 2013 at No. 13.

Among the regional teams slated to compete on Saturday are four top-ten teams, including Penn (No. 2 men, No. 6 women), Princeton (No. 4 men, No. 5 women), Temple (No. 8 men, No. 8 women) and St. Joseph's (No. 9 men).

The Eagles' last raced on Sept. 29, when they traveled to Bethlehem, Pa., for the prestigious Paul Short Run. There, five men and seven women earned new personal records (PR's) on the cross country course, starting with junior Ben Doiron who led the men's squad with a new PR of 24:27 for 50th overall on the 8k course. Senior Alaeldin Tirba (24:30), junior Matthew Rainey (24:37), senior Liam Purdy (25:01) and senior Sam Doud (25:35) all led the Eagles' scoring efforts with new PR's, helping the team to a 19th place overall finish.

The women were also led by a slew of PR performances, starting with junior Adriana Hooks who led the squad in 21:15 for 6k. A pair of freshmen rounded out AU's top three finishers with Nadia Stratton (21:46) and Shelbi Wuss (21:49), followed by senior Brianna Belo (21:51) and sophomore Arianna Lopez (21:58).

For the latest on AU Cross Country, stay tuned to AUEagles.com and follow the team on Twitter @AU_TrackXC.