Competitions on the road tend to offer many challenges for teams. Entering another team’s territory, one must not only battle other teams, but the hometown crowd as well. This weekend, the Cornell women’s and men’s track teams will be traveling to Lewisburg Pennsylvania to compete in the Bucknell Invitational.
At Bucknell, the Red will compete against teams from the northeast region for top prizes. Both teams are coming off of strong wins in the Cornell April Cabin Fever Indoor Invitational as well meets from their spring break trip to California. As the season begins the wind down, things are starting to fall into place for the team.
The men’s team is focused on the appending Ivy League Heptathlon Championships. After coming up short during the indoor season, the team is working hard in all areas in order to ensure optimum results. The team is focused on execution, especially on big stages.
“I’m looking forward to our competition at Bucknell this weekend,” said head coach Adrian Durant. “[The Bucknell Invitational] will provide a great opportunity for our guys to show how hard they have been working. Being three weeks out from the heps, it is time to start putting some very good performances out there.”
Cornell is expecting a competitive weekend with high quality results.
“We can always expect a very good meet with excellent competition when we go to Bucknell,” Durant said. “Looking at the weather forecast for Lewisburg, we should see quite a few heps leading performances this weekend.”
The women’s team is also starting to pick up the pace on their way into championship season. With three weeks until the main event, the Red is using every meet as a chance to hone their skills and make sure everyone is moving at the same pace.
“The transition from indoor track to outdoor track can be tricky, so it’s important we all get on the same page and make sure we really give our best efforts since the outdoor season goes by fast,” said freshman hurdler Ellery Biancoand. “We don’t have much time until HEPS; there’s no time to waste.”
Biancoand also discussed how personally she has been working to make the outdoor season a successful one.
“I’ve been training for quite some time now so bringing that fitness and skill out to the track is considered the easy part,” Biancoand said. “ I’m excited to keep pushing myself.”
Both teams can expect competition from other teams in the region. However, they are looking forward to the task at hand.
“It is always a good competition,” said head coach Rich Bowman. “Penn State will there, Virginia Tech. Bucknell is also a strong team It’s not that far. It is appropriate for us right now [that] we are able to put all our athletes in the right races and ensure that they are able to compete.”
“This meet in particular is a fun meet because it’s the first time outdoors we will have the whole team going,” Bowman said. “We are really excited and we have everyone together, banging on the same drum. The weather is also very promising; I wish we could go right now.”
“Every meet that we have and every opportunity to compete is essential in preparation for the Outdoor [Heptagonal] Championship,” Durant said. “The meet at Bucknell this weekend will take us one step closer to clinching the win at Princeton next month”
Although away meets offer a different set of challenges, both teams seem prepared for what is ahead. The pace of their season is accelerating as the team prepares for the biggest meet of the season.