New Zealand runners Holly and Lucy van Dalen have spent the past two years at Stony Brook University making history for a young Division I athletics program. With a series of school records and America East Conference titles to their credit, they are now entering a new phase of training that they hope will propel them to the medal stand at the NCAA Championships before they graduate.
Here is a link to my final project, which I chose to do on these Stony Brook standouts.
I can still remember my cross country recruiting trip to Stony Brook like it was…well, maybe not quite yesterday, but certainly the day or two before that. It was a night filled with bona fide memory-makers for a hardcore nerd like myself (I shudder to think that it was even worse when I was still in high school), and I guess there was something covertly intriguing about pigging out at the local Green Cactus, watching a rented copy of ‘White Men Can’t Jump’ and sleeping on a future teammate’s dorm room floor that got me excited about officially becoming a Seawolf (whatever that is).
Before I could align myself with a cult whose competition dress includes scarlet red booty shorts and who worships what appears to be a blue wolf in tube socks (seriously, have you seen the statue in the athletic complex?), I had to stumble through the whole meet-and-greet thing…a quick introductory course in learning everybody’s names, finding my way back to the locker room without wandering into the training room and jogging at a ‘conversational’ pace with a few future teammates around campus (and beyond).
The run itself wasn’t bad…an easy four miles around a few winding roads behind the train tracks-pretty standard for a getting-to-know-you-hope-you-like-our-team type of thing. We returned to campus for a quick set of stride outs on the track…
And that was the first time I saw it.