PROVIDENCE, R.I. - Running in just her first collegiate race, Notre Dame freshman Meg Ryan finished first of 280 athletes at the National Catholic Cross Country Invitational and earned her first career BIG EAST women's cross country Athlete of the Week honor. On the men's side, Cincinnati junior Eric Finan took first of 207 runners at the Iona Meet of Champions to claim BIG EAST men's cross country Athlete of the Week recognition.
Ryan led Notre Dame to a first-place finish of 35 teams that competed at the Notre Dame Golf Course in Notre Dame, Ind., on Sept. 17. The freshman finished the 5K race with a time of 17:37 to win her first career individual title, edging her second-place competitor from Dayton by just one second. The meet included teams from Dayton, Saint Louis, Xavier and Holy Cross, as well as BIG EAST competitors DePaul and Marquette.
Finan finished first against a difficult field that included No. 10 Iona and a host of regionally ranked opponents. The New Richmond, Ohio, native finished the 8K race with a time of 24:48.45, besting American International's Glarius Rop by 10 seconds to take the individual title. Cincinnati finished 11th out of the 19 teams competing. This is the second-straight individual title for Finan at the Iona Meet of Champions.
The BIG EAST Championship will be held on Oct. 30 at Jamesville Beach Park in Jamesville, N.Y., hosted by Syracuse University.