2011 Men's Cross Country Season Review

Release Date:
November 1, 2011
The Office of Sports Information
(716) 649-7900 ext. 333

Season Results/Recap

2011 Season Review:  The Hilbert men’s cross country team finished another season with a core group of committed runners blended with a few new experienced athletes to give first year head coach Geoff Brunger a nice welcome season. Brunger provided the consistent teaching and preparation for his veteran squad and challenged them to push further than ever before. The Hawks trained every day and raced on weekends in anticipation of the AMCC championship meet at the end of October. Eight dedicated runners ran the 8K race at Beaver Island State Park (Grand Island, NY) and brought home a ninth place finish.
Hilbert’s top male runner was sophomore-transfer Matt Williams (Orchard Park, NY/Orchard Park). He led the Hawks in all the races he competed in with his best 8K time of 33:29 at the CCOC race held at Seneca Lake State Park. Challenging for the second place finish all year were senior Aaron Lawrence (Fishkill, NY/John Jay &Erie Community College), freshman John Sadowski (Elma, NY/Iroquois) (whose personal time improved by 3 minutes over the course of the season), and Matt Hunt (Holbrook, NY/Centereach).   Lawrence earned the team’s first individual finish at the Fredonia Invitational (37:54); Sadowski’s personal best was at the CCOC (35:13) and constantly was in the mix as the second finisher for the Hawks; and Hunt always had big sprints to finish each race (36:19 best time at Behrend Invite).   
The remaining Hawks brought great senior attitudes and work ethic to the team. Pat Lagueras (Rochester, NY/Charles Finney), who used the fall season to physically prepare for the spring baseball season, ran a 38:30 in the championship race.  Paul Coleman (Buffalo, NY/Bishop Timon-St. Jude) and Steven Crane (Williamsville, NY/Williamsville North) often trained together and motivated each other during the long races. Crane carved minutes off his times over the course of the season (eight from the first race to the 52:24 AMCC time), while Coleman struggled with knee problems, but pushed through the pain.  
Rounding out the roster were Cameron Haag (Niagara Falls, NY/Niagara Wheatfield), and Lenny Messina (Lake Grove, NY/Centereach). Due to scheduling issues, Haag didn’t run with the team until the last four races in October. He was able to drop almost three minutes off his first time at the Medaille Invitational (Beaver Island State Park) to the AMCC championship race. Messina ran early in the season giving the Hawks support in September.
The Hawks continue to train year round with the expectation of establishing a solid cross country program at Hilbert College.

Hilbert College, located in suburban Hamburg, N.Y., south of Buffalo, is a private four-year college founded in 1957 in the Catholic Franciscan tradition. With nearly 1,100 students, Hilbert is a dynamic Western New York college that offers career-focused majors, including one of the top criminal justice programs in the region, and more than 50 minors and concentrations. The college’s engaging, student-centered campus community offers numerous leadership, internship, and service learning opportunities from which students launch successful careers while making positive changes in their communities. The Hilbert Blueprint promotes a well-rounded student experience over four years – starting with the Foundations Seminar in the freshman year, followed by Sophomore Service, Junior Symposium, and culminating with the Senior Capstone. Hilbert has expanded its academic offerings with the college’s first graduate programs and new Accelerated Degree Programs geared to adult learners.