Thursday, October 29, 2009

The Elusive Repeat Championship

Repeating as a champion is an extremely hard thing to do because once you have won a title everyone is gunning for you the following year and it is impossible not to be a blip on someone’s radar. Only several great teams or individuals are capable of accomplishing the feat. The Chicago Bulls repeated several times as did the Los Angeles Lakers not to mention the New York Yankees, who are kings of repeat titles.

Although professional sports are vastly different from that of the collegiate variety the principles are the same when it comes to trying to claim a title in consecutive years. It has only been accomplished by seven teams in NCAA Men’s Basketball, while football is even rarer now a day with no team winning back-to-back BCS Championships.
However, I digress because as fall championship season gets underway here at Charlotte and in the Atlantic 10 this weekend I look towards St. Louis, Mo. where not one but two Charlotte 49ers will have the chance to accomplish the elusive repeat in the Atlantic 10 Cross Country Championship.

Adu Dentamo and Amanda Goetschius both claimed the 2008 titles by running blistering times that both registered as the third fastest in A-10 Championship history for their respective race. Dentamo defeated the field by running the 8,000m course in 24:01, while Goetschius claimed her title in a mere 17:37 for the 5,000 meter run.
The duo has the chance this weekend to be Charlotte’s first two repeat champions in the 25 years since the women’s cross country program was started in 1985. (The men have been running since 1978.)

Dentamo, a senior, has claimed All-Atlantic 10 honors every year of his career including a 13th place finish as a freshman, 4th as a sophomore and of course last year’s title as a juionr, while this season he has already won one race, when he claimed the Charlotte Invitational winning by 15 seconds.

Goetschius also claimed all-conference honors as a freshman placing 7th before claiming last year’s title in her sophomore season. She has only competed in two races this year and took second in her best race, the Charlotte Invitational.

So if Goetschius is able to come away with a repeat title on Saturday we won’t be talking about a one-peat, or a two-peat as Atlantic 10 Champion we would be talking about a three-peat for her.

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