Two and a half months. That’s how long the women’s equestrian team has had to contemplate its second place finish at the Skidmore Invitational last Dec. 9.
Today, the women have a chance to redeem themselves. 19 of the Cornell riders will travel to the home of the Thoroughbred’s in a rematch of last semester’s contest. Skidmore holds a 14-point lead over the Red in the Region, but head coach Christopher Mitchell and his team are ready to decrease that deficit.
“I think we’re right on par,” Mitchell said in response to the lack of competition for his team. “[The women] have been ready for at least a week”
Cornell finished fourth place in the region last year behind Skidmore, Cassanovia and St. Lawrence, all of whom are former national champions, but is benefiting this year from a realignment of leagues. Whereas last year the Red competed with 18 of the same schools at every meet, this year the number was decreased to 10.
Now with half of the season left, the squad finds itself in second place and in prime condition for attending Zonal Championships and eventually Nationals. The women must finish first to attend Zones as a team, something 12 riders accomplished individually, last season, but was never realized as a team.
Junior Julie Canter, who was reserve high point rider last year until she was edged out in the last show, has a nine point lead over a second place rider from Skidmore. Classmate Zoe Orecki is close behind in third.
“When we overtake [Skidmore], and I’m confident that we will, we will be in the first place in our Region,” Mitchell said. “If we chip away at their lead, we’ll be on such a high roll. Then the next show is at [Cornell].” That meets should give the Red a commanding home advantage.
Archived article by Amanda Angel