HepsXC — Cornell Women

Kellner & Hartung by Nathan Crumpton

Confession time. As I stood under the tent after the women’s championship last year, Coach Artie Smith wandered in and asked if results were yet official. They weren’t, but I took it upon myself to ask someone if he knew. Someone who would know these things.

“Oh yeah, Cornell won for sure,” he said. So I found Coach Smith and was the first to congratulate him, setting off a celebration. When I returned to the tent, I said, “Wow, I thought Columbia was really close.” My informant said, “Columbia? What? I was talking about Princeton. Was Columbia close?”

So I was confronted with a dilemma. Do I interrupt the Cornell celebration to tell them, “Hey, I really don’t know what I was talking about.” Or do I simply flee the scene and wish for the best. As I pondered, the official word came. Cornell by two points over Columbia. Whew! I would have been pelted with snowballs had it gone the other way.

Well, I don’t think it will be that close this year. Dartmouth without Abbey D’Ag. Columbia without Waverly Neer. Princeton not as strong as the preseason suggested. Yale? Are the Bulldogs really ready?

Cornell — ranked No. 7 nationally — is simply loaded. The Big Red crushed it at Paul Short and then did even more damage at the adidas Wisco Invitational. With D’Ag and Neer on the sidelines, senior Katie Kellner (West Windsor, N.J.) and junior Rachel Sorna (Hopewell Junction, N.Y.) could easily go 1-2. Throw in junior Devin McMahon (Redmond, Wash.), senior co-captain Genna Hartung (Morrisonville, N.Y.) and junior Emily Shearer (Lafayette, Calif.) and it is a team that could go low, scoring fewer than 30 points or so.

And if that isn’t enough, freshman Caroline Kellner (West Windsor, N.J.) — yes, the little sister of Katie — has been running wild as well. And do you remember Kelsey Karys (Newton, Mass.), who won a Heps’ 10k title as a sophomore? She’s been struggling with injuries for more than a year now, but looked great in winning a low-key home meet last week. It almost seems unfair.

But Coach Smith, don’t ask me about results. Mum is the word in 2012. — Brett Hoover

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