BRONX, N.Y. – Junior Victor Ricci (Narragansett, R.I.) topped the Pirates’ results list for the second-straight meet and the fifth time this season at Saturday’s IC4A Championships in the Bronx, placing 47th out of 183 entrants to lead the Seton Hall men’s cross country team to a 13th place finish.
The Hall out-performed a total of nine other squads at the season-ending meet including a pair of Garden State counterparts in Rider and NJIT. Northeastern took home the men’s team title in the university division.
Ricci crossed the line with a five-mile time of 27:00.9 to record his fifth team-best time of the fall. The standout junior has scored for The Hall in over 85 percent of his career appearances and delivered one of the highlights of the season when he was named BIG EAST Men’s Cross Country Athlete of the Week following a top-25 performance at the Metropolitan Championships in Van Cortlandt Park – the same site as the IC4A event.
Sophomore Louis Bustamante (Hamburg, N.J.) capped a season in which he made a strong case to be considered the team’s most-improved performer by coming in just two spots and less than two seconds behind Ricci with a 49th-place time of 27:01.7. After ranking in the team’s top-three just once as a freshman, the Hamburg native did so on five separate occasions in 2015.
A similar case could be made for another sophomore in Bryant Cordova (Elizabeth, N.J.) who turned in the third-fastest time on the team in Saturday’s finale, clocking in at 27:35.4. Cordova paced The Hall in all three of the meets that Ricci did not – including the BIG EAST Championship - and collected a total of six scoring times.
Jeff Larson (Yucca Valley, Calif.) also put together a solid sophomore campaign and punctuated it with a fourth-place team finish at the IC4A (27:47.6) to notch his eighth-straight scoring time; five of which saw him crack the top-three on the team.
Junior Sean Kip (Union, N.J.) closed the Seton Hall top-five with a time of 28:27.4, his fifth scoring effort of 2015.
Seniors Jake Bast (St. Louis, Mo.), Ryan Flannery (Forked River, N.J.), Walter Grosenheider (Madison, Wis.) and Joseph Martinelli (Branchburg, N.J.) – a group whose collective contributions have helped move a young program forward – all competed in their final cross country race for the blue & white.
The Pirates will be off from competition for over three months before taking to the track for selected events in the spring.