Cross country makes a run for state finals


Areeshah Farooq ’23, Staff reporter

This year, cross county had a great start as Riordan’s teams have been putting in a lot of dedication and effort into the past few races. 

“It’s going well. Our BoysVarsity is in a good position to qualify for CCS and our younger divisions are getting better every week,” Benny Willers, head coach of cross country said regarding the season.

A few members, so far, have made it into the top 10 rankings. One of whom is Collin Murtagh ’22, having recently broken the Lowell Invitational school record. Running 2.83 miles with a time of 15:10.2, he beat EJ Odocayen’s ‘20 time from the 2019 season. 

As a reflection on the race, Murtagh said, “I felt pretty satisfied about the run. To run that time and place that high early on in the season made me excited for the rest of the season.”

During the Lowell Invitation on Sept. 7, the Junior Varsity team ranked 5th out of 30 teams. Although the freshmen and varsity teams didn’t get high rankings, everyone finished the race. They hope to persist into the season and give it their all. 

Daphne Batmale ’25 also ranked in the top 10, being the first girl at Riordan to win a medal at the Rams Invitational at Westmoor High School on Sept. 28. 

Along with their new goals, they’ve also got team spirit. 

“It’s really fun running with the other girls at Cross Country,” said Batmale. 

The atmosphere during the meets gives off an encouraging vibe that seems to get the team’s adrenaline going. 

As the season progresses, she added, “I want to get faster.” 

With ambition to achieve more, Murtagh ‘22 added, “​​I think our team can improve on working together in races. In cross country, you’re stronger together than you are individually.”

Finishing off the season, the team strives to qualify for the State meet, and place top three as a team at WCAL Championships.