Purchase, NY -- The United States Merchant Marine Academy Mariners wouldn't let torrential rains and the threat of tornados stop them from running away with the Purchase College Invitational victory on Saturday afternoon.
Merchant Marine finished first out of eight teams. In a field which featured Purchase College, FDU-Florham, CIA, Sarah Lawrence, Albertus Magnus, the College of New Rochelle, and NYU-Poly, the Mariners edged out CIA beating them via tiebreaker.
Freshman Madeline Sullivan, who placed in the Mariners sixth spot, ended up being the difference maker as she finished nine places ahead of CIA's sixth place runner to break the tie and give USMMA the victory.
Another key role was played by freshman Gloria Mahoney who made up ground on the final stretch; diving across the finish line amidst the rain, muck, and winds to creep one spot ahead of the CIA runner she passed in the process. This last ditch effort turned out to be pivotal as it was the difference between forcing a tie and CIA winning outright by one point.
Four runners finished in the top 10 for Kings Point. Senior Gretchen Halubek placed fourth, sophomore captain Amber Kinter took fifth, sophomore Elizabeth Coulter finished ninth, and the aforementioned Mahoney placed 10th.
Freshman Danielle Garcia-Lance, who finished in Merchant Marine's third position last week, did not compete.
"It's been a long time since our girls have been overall meet champions as a team," said Head Coach Greg Lott. I believe this will be the start of great things to come."
The Mariners will be competing against a strong field next weekend at the C.W. Post Invitational.