FOURTH ESTATE September 26, 2016 | Volume 4 Issue 4 George Mason Universityâ€™s official student news outlet gmufourthestate.com | @IVEstate
Like a Rosetta Stone
JC Cinema closes
Club sport of the week: Football
Letter from the Editor
Sosan Malik Managing Editor
Jennifer Shasken Online Editor
Fairfax Ice Arena is hiring part time: Cashiers/Café/
Customer Service We offer Flexible schedules and a great work environment. Fairfax Ice Arena will provide training for all positions. Hourly Rates: $10 –$12.00 (depending on experience)
on Duty (Part-time)
• Candidates must be dependable, honest, and self-motivated. • Must be available on weekends • Excellent customer service skills • Previous experience in a supervisory/training position Hourly Rates: $12 – 14/hour
In this week’s sports section, there’s an article entitled “Meet Darrell Green, Mason’s Associate Athletics Director.” It’s a profile of Green, a former member of the Washington Redskins and two-time Super Bowl champion. We had a bit of a debate in the newsroom over whether or not to use the name “Redskins.” In recent years, the name has been criticized as having racist undertones. Some newsrooms have stopped using the name entirely. Other papers, like the Washington Post, opt to use the name in news stories but not in editorials. While some members of our staff, including yours truly, are opposed to the name “Redskins,” we ultimately chose to use it. For better or worse, it’s still the team’s name, and it would be inaccurate to call the team anything else.
Todd Gonda Copy Chief
Peter Eccleston Culture Editor
Devan Fishburne Local Editor
David Schrack Sports Editor
Megan Zendek Art Director
Think we’re wrong? Think we’re right? Drop me a line at eic@ gmufourthestate.com. I’d love to hear your thoughts.
Peter Park Multimedia Editor
Naomi Folta Photo Editor
— MacKenzie Reagan, editor-in-chief
Regine Victoria Social Media Editor
Crime Log Sept. 19
2016-030286 / Hit and Run Complainant (GMU) reported a hit and run of a vehicle. Lot K | Pending | 8:30 AM to 12:30 PM
Kathryn Mangus Director
David Carroll Associate Director
Leslie Steiger Fiscal and Operations Assistant Director
Alyssa Swaney Sales Team
ON THE COVER
Quarterback Shareef Abulhawa makes a pass during pratice on September 13. Photo by Dave Schrack.
Please email Jimmy Torres at: firstname.lastname@example.org or pick up an application at 3779 Pickett Road Fairfax, VA 22031
Wesley Ward Sales Team Fourth Estate is printed each Monday for George Mason University and its surrounding Fairfax community. The editors of Fourth Estate have exclusive authority over the content that is published. There are no outside parties that play a role in the newspaper’s content, and should there be a question or complaint regarding this policy, the Editor-in-Chief should be notified at the email provided. Fourth Estate is a free publication, limit one copy per person. Additional copies are 25 cents payable to the Office of Student Media. Mail Fourth Estate George Mason University Mail stop 2C5 4400 University Drive Fairfax, Va. 22030 Phone 703-993-2950
CAPS introduces initial consultations The Mason office will now offer a new way to schedule counseling appointments. RIDA KAYANI | STAFF WRITER
University Life’s Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS) has introduced a new way to schedule counseling appointments called initial consultations. According to CAPS, the initial consultations, created from the feedback provided by the student body and community, are a way to decrease the time it takes for a student to speak and connect with a clinician. Students can expect to have an appointment set up with a clinician anywhere between one to four days after requesting help. CAPS acts as the primary provider for mental health services for Mason students. Their services include offering clinical assessments from their qualified clinicians, group therapy sessions, providing appropriate information and resources and overall coaching and consultations.
As early as this fall, initial consultation appointment set ups will be offered primarily through a phone-basis. Dr. Barbara Meehan, the executive director for CAPS, said that having the service extend beyond a facetoface interaction broadens the accessibility of services to the students, regardless of where they are located. This way, the speed at which students can receive help or assistance is greatly increased. In the past, CAPS operated under a different procedure for incoming calls from students. Meehan described the previous scheduling process as one in which a student would speak with a CAPS administrator and, based on the information they shared, receive the appropriate type of appointment. A student would receive either an immediate crisis appointment or an appointment later that same day,
or, if the request is not urgent, a future appointment several weeks out. Despite the scheduling change, the department will still offer immediate responsive action towards students in acute crisis, where Meehan said, “[CAPS will] continue to offer immediate crisis appointments and will speak with any student at any time.” Although the services offered through CAPS are strictly confidential and irrelevant to a student’s academic record, Meehan said that there is a disparity between students seeking services at CAPS based on the severity of their condition. “Some students think of Counseling and Psychological Services as a place to turn only when they are feeling really bad. While we are absolutely available for those experiencing acute emotional distress, we are also a great place to
turn for students who need support managing day to day challenges,” Meehan said. With the new initial consultations, students can be guaranteed access to a clinician in a timely manner, according to Meehan. According to Meehan, CAPS will continuously seek to enhance their services and experiences for its students through active communication between the community and the department. Dr. Meehan also encourages students to visit the GMU CAPS website at http://caps.gmu.edu/ to find more information about the wide array of services provided. If you or anyone you know is in need of assistance please refer to the list of emergency contacts to the right.
Numbers to Know National Suicide Prevention Lifeline
1-800-273-8255 GMU 24 hour Sexual Assault and Intimate Partner Violence Hotline
703-380-1434 Veterans’ Crisis Hotline
877-838-2838 NonEmergency Contacts Counseling and Psychological Services
703-993-2380 Student Support
703-993-5376 Mason Police
Rosetta Stone comes to Mason The language-learning software is now available on campus for free. HAMNA AHMAD | STAFF WRITER
Salut! ¿Cómo andas? Heb je geluncht? From dining halls to classrooms, a chorus of languagesand dialects can be heard all across Mason’s campuses. With University Libraries’ new Rosetta Stone subscription, students, faculty and staff now have free access to learning 30 of those languages.
According to Madeline Kelly, head of Collection Development for University Libraries, the librarysystem acquired the Rosetta Stone software last spring and made it available to students faculty and staff during the summer. Students can choose from languages like Greek, Hebrew, Irish, Urdu, Swahili and many more.
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“We had received a fair number of specific requests from the foreign language department to get this,” Kelly said. “We had heard a lot from other foreign language software vendors, but Rosetta was what the department was asking for.” Kelly said professors in the Department of Modern and Classical Languages can encourage students to use Rosetta Stone in between class sessions to keep up with practice, especially when the course might only be scheduled once or twice a week. The Rosetta Stone Library Solution for Higher Education package, which Mason offers, is designed to allow all users to study anywhere, anytime, similar to how the library’s databases are used. But studying for a Spanish exam is not the only reason a student might want to look into Rosetta. There are 80 languages spoken on Mason’s campuses and students come from 130 different
countries. This global experience offered at Mason also lent itself to the library’s decision to provide the software. “We were just thinking with the huge international student body and this increasing focus on international mindedness for the university as a whole, we thought that it made sense to offer something that can help English speaking students broaden their language skills and also can help students from other countries strengthen their English language skills,” Kelly said. Junaid Anwar, who already speaks three languages, was excited to learn that the library is now offering this service. “I think it’s a great resource for students. I think it’s very helpful for people to learn foreign languages because it gives them more opportunities, even to make friends, especially at a school like Mason,” Anwar said.
Interested students like Anwar can learn more about the program through the training sessions being offered by the library in October. Kelly explained that the Rosetta Stone service is slightly different from the usual library resources in that users have to create individual accounts to get started, which may be confusing to those new to the program. A librarian will lead one training, but a representative from Rosetta Stone will come to Mason to lead the other. Moving forward, Kelly said that the library system hopes to continue providing resources and services that meet the needs of the community. Although data on how and to what extent Rosetta Stone is being utilized will not be available for a few months, the library continues to receive positive feedback.
Johnson Center Cinema closes University Mall Theatre partners with OSI TAYLOR WICHTENDAHL | STAFF WRITER JENNIFER SHASKAN | ONLINE EDITOR
Much to the dismay of many students, the Johnson Center Cinema has recently stopped offering movies. For 20 years, the Cinema would show one movie per weekend with limited showtimes, but the Office of Student Involvement has begun the process to replace it. With the Cinema closed, students are now able to see many more movies offered at University Mall Theatres. This change comes after the OSI partnered with University Mall Theatres
during a snowstorm last winter. During the storm, OSI offered students the opportunity to attend one movie for free at the second-run theater just across the street from campus on Braddock Road as a way of curing their cabin fever.
The movies that students can see with this week’s free ticket are Jason Bourne, Bad Moms, Star Trek: Beyond, Secret Life of Pets, Finding Dory, Ice Age: Collision Course and Rocky Horror Picture Show.
of one per week. Each Monday students can pick up a new ticket that is valid through the following Sunday. While the Cinema is retired from showing movies, it is still part of the Johnson Center and is available to be reserved.
This lead to OSI reaching out to University Mall Theatres to continue the partnership. The new system has allowed OSI to reallocate funds to other student organizations while still giving students opportunities for free entertainment.
To obtain free tickets, students can go to the OSI on the second floor of the Hub. Each student can get one free ticket with their Mason ID. Mason is offering a total of 300 tickets a week on a first come, first serve basis. (Tickets are normally $5 for the general public and $4 for those with a Mason ID at the theater.)
“This is the first week we are doing it. Since it is so new, we haven’t had much of a response yet, but the students who have received tickets have been enthusiastic,” Medley said.
According to Simone Medley, assistant director of programming for Student Involvement, another reason that the University made this shift was so that students had significantly more options.
Medley said the free tickets are available starting Monday each week with a limit
“I would personally prefer the JC because it’s on campus. I would like to go to the movies without having to use a car since I don’t have one. So I would rarely see myself take advantage of the change,” junior Taylor Shubert said.
Echoing a similar sentiment, junior Nick Sauter said, “I wouldn’t take advantage of it. Why walk all the way to university mall when I can see the same movie at a closer venue?” The Gunston Go Bus shuttle picks up seven days a week at Presidents Park. On the weekdays, pick ups are 7:20 a.m. to 10:25 p.m. On weekends, the shuttle runs from 3:05 p.m. to 9:45 p.m. The Gunston Go Bus drops off on the back side of University Mall next to the steps beside the movie theater. More information can be found at shuttle.gmu.edu. For regular updates on the films, visit OSI’s Facebook page at www.facebook.com/OSIFilms.
“I don’t know, what do you want?” Not sure where to eat? Try one of these eight NoVA and D.C. spots. EMILY VERBIEST | STAFF WRITER
If you’re going for... Healthy True Food Kitchen 2910 District Ave.,Fairfax, VA 22031 With high ceilings, an open kitchen and abundant plant life, sunlight pours into the spacious dining area at True Food Kitchen. The restaurant’s interior can be described as a cross between a rustic country kitchen and a swanky Manhattan lounge. The restaurant offers exactly what their title implies—true food. Their menu is based on an antiinflammatory diet and offers diverse entrees such as spicy Panang curry, Scottish steelhead salmon and wild mushroom pizza. Burgers Shake Shack (multiple locations) Often hailed as the InnOut of the East Coast, Shake Shack uses perfectlyseasoned meat, warm potato buns and their signature ShackSauce to create ridiculously good burgers. Originally a hot dog cart in New York, Shake Shack has become famous for its simple burgers and crinklecut fries. In addition to hot dogs and traditional burgers, Shake Shack offers a mushroom burger, a fried chicken sandwich and, of course, shakes. Although Shake Shack lines can be quite long at times, it’s worth the wait. Something Different
Historical Martin’s Tavern 1264 Wisconsin Ave. NW, Washington, D.C. 20007 Opened in 1933 and located on Wisconsin Avenue, Martin’s Tavern is D.C.’s oldest family-owned restaurant. Many U.S. Presidents, including Harry S. Truman, John F. Kennedy, Richard Nixon, and George W. Bush have dined within the warm walls of Martin’s Tavern. In fact, Kennedy proposed to his wife, Jackie, while sitting in Booth 3. The restaurant offers classic American fare like steak and eggs, fried oysters and shepherd’s pie. No matter what you order, you are sure to be pleased, but a personal favorite is their Monte Cristo sandwich. Upscale Café du Parc 1401 Pennsylvania Ave. NW, Washington, D.C. 20004 If you are seeking a restaurant with a refined menu and an elegant ambience, Café du Parc may be your place. Located inside the Willard InterContinental hotel in D.C., Café du Parc serves respectable French cuisine with friendly service. If given the chance, dine out on the terrace in the evening. As day slips into night, the restaurant courtyard illuminates beautifully, with lights snaking up the trees nearby and the Capitol Building gleaming in the distance. Dessert Beard Papa’s (multiple locations)
If you are in the mood for something different, Bepop offers customizable tacos, bowls and burritos that fuse Korean and Mexican flavors. Given the spectrum of ingredients, which range from sweet galbi and carne asada to Mexican street corn and seasoned kimchi, it’s easy to concoct a combination of your liking.
Originally from Osaka, Japan, Beard Papa’s now has nearly 230 stores around the world, two of which are located about 30 minutes away from Mason’s Fairfax campus. Beard Papa’s is known for baking fresh shells and then injecting them with chilled custard. The base custard flavors include vanilla, chocolate, green tea and dulce de leche. However, they offer seasonal flavors, such as espresso, mango, pineapple, apple cinnamon and caramel pumpkin.
Oyamel Cocina Mexicana 401 Seventh St. NW,Washington, D.C.20004
Baked and Wired 1052 Thomas Jefferson St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20007
Frog legs. Cactus paddles. Grasshopper tacos. Oyamel is a must for those who seek new and exciting culinary experiences. This innovative restaurant aims to elevate classic Mexican flavors by serving up a variety of unusual small plates. Located on the corner of 7th and D Streets in D.C., Oyamel possesses a lively atmosphere with eccentric decor. For those who have an empty stomach and an open mind, Oyamel is the place to go.
Don’t let the name fool you: Baked and Wired’s treats won’t get you stoned. They’ll give you another type of high: a sugar high. B&W has an array of baked goods such as brownies, buttermilk biscuits, biscottis and “cakecups.” The shop’s inventive cupcakes come in flavors like Razmanian Devil, Dirty Chai, Flapjack and Smurfette. The flavor “ynot,” which is homemade chocolate ice cream between two peanut butter cookies, is particularly memorable.
Bepop Korean-Mexican Grill 10730 Fairfax Blvd., Fairfax, VA 22030
Meet Darrell Green, Mason’s Associate Athletics Director BEN CRISWELL | STAFF WRITER
Standing 5 feet 8 (and three-quarters, as he’ll tell you) inches, dressed in a green-collared shirt, dark pants and dress shoes, he blends right into a campus of more than 35,000 students and faculty. Put a burgundy and gold 28 on his back and football cleats on his feet, and he becomes “the Ageless Wonder.” Darrell Green has been Mason’s Associate Athletics Director since August, a role in which he will seek to strengthen the sports department. He will also help fundraise for the long list of projects and renovations the athletics department has planned. For Green, what you see is what you get. What he says is what he means, in the most unapologetically truthful way possible. A quick Google search of his name will tell you just why, through thousands upon thousands
of interviews, videos, highlights and records — and he’s not afraid to show them to you. The self-titled “itty-bitty guy” was by stature everything the name presumes: a little guy from a little school thrust onto football’s grandest stage. From the first game Green ever played, it was undeniable that whatever he lacked in physical prowess he made up 10 times over in character and speed—lots and lots of speed. Over a 20-year career with the Washington Redskins (a record in itself, barring kickers), Green won two Super Bowls, three NFC Championships and four of the NFL’s Fastest Man Competitions. He was also selected to seven Pro Bowls, was a four-time first-team All-Pro performer, the 1996 Walter Payton Man of the Year Award and inducted into the Redskins’ Ring of Fame and the Pro Football Hall of Fame.
The dozens of awards and honors are only half the picture, however. Players receive awards, win championships and set records, but the greatest compliment any professional athlete can receive is the respect of their peers, both on and off the field. On the field, the respect came from opposing quarterbacks not even daring to throw Green’s way. That meant opposing running backs, 15 to 20 yards ahead, were looking over their shoulders and knowing Green was going to get them. The on-field respect came with every passing step. But off the field, number 28 was the same man he was on it: respected, revered, selfless and passionate. Darrell Green was born in 1960, in Houston, Texas. He grew up on “Leave It to Beaver,” “Gunsmoke” and “The Andy Griffith Show,” shows that depict an overwhelming sense of community and characters that sacrifice their personal gains for the benefit of others, not because they have to, but because they want to. Things like this help to explain who the man behind the myth is. Green was a son before he ever played professionally. He was a father before he was
inducted into the Hall of Fame. He was the “itty-bitty guy” before he was “the Ageless Wonder.”
of excellence” — something he expects to bring to his new position as associate athletic director here at Mason.
The message has remained the same through his entire life. “I’ve never looked at myself in the mirror, and forgot who I was,” Green said.
The Hall-of-Famer believes that greatness already exists here, and it is his job to augment the winning qualities displayed by the athletic department.
With all the distractions and temptations that come with being a professional athlete, Green never wavered. He stayed true to himself.
Together with current Athletic Director, former teammate, Super Bowl champion and friend, Brad Edwards, the two look to continue to foster a vision and culture of success.
While others have succumbed to the pressures and spoils of being rich and famous at the same time, Green saw it as just another medium to express the things he has always believed will continue to believe. Green’s charitable work serves as the logical extension of his values. In 1988, just five years into the league, Green founded the Darrell Green Youth Life Foundation, aimed at turning children into upstanding citizens who positively influence their communities. In 2003, Green was named chair of the Council of Service and Civic Participation under President George W. Bush. He has been a public face and community advocate in the D.C. area for more than 30 years and has served on the board of Marymount University and as an Associate Athletics Director at the University of Mary Washington. All of this can be summed up in what Green describes as his “personal brand
When asked about the tangible goals Green hopes to accomplish at Mason, he said, “I hope we can win the Super Bowl, I hope we can get back and win the Final Four, I hope we can win the A-10 in four [or] five different sports.” He stated that excellence already exists at Mason, but it is his job to “continue to foster a way of life and a vision.” Green has kept a watchful eye on the rise of Mason ever since he moved to the D.C. area in 1983, and he has always respected the athletics and academics. Green said he will be sure to take the same approach he took to football, his family and his community with him in however long he may stay at Mason because, quite simply, it’s the only way he knows how. “I’m just going to come here and be what I’ve always been.”
(PHOTO COURTSEY OF KIICHIR0 SATO/ AP)
Darrell Green stands next to his bust in the Pro Football Hall of Fame during his induction.
Club sport of the week: Football MICHAEL ABLER | STAFF WRITER
Few people think of George Mason as a football school. That’s because Mason does not have a NCAA Division 1, or D1, football program, despite attempts to create one. But Mason does have a club football program, and it is among Mason’s lesser known club sports. Assistant Coach Virgil Seay acknowledged the team’s lack of recognition, saying he wants the team “to be more wellknown on campus and in general.” Seay, a former Washington Redskins wide receiver who helped win Super Bowl XVII, mainly works with the wide receivers to get them flying down the field. “We have to make it known that we exist,” Seay said. The team’s recognition may be increased by newly hired Associate Athletics Director Darrell Green, a former Redskin himself, who won Super Bowls XXII and XXVI and ultimately ended up in the profootball Hall of Fame. Club President and Wide Receiver Xavier Savannah believes that Green’s hiring could “upgrade publicity if Green attended a home game.” The team’s recognition is one of the reasons why the team uses its practice field, the RAC Field, instead of the Field House for games. The field house hosts a much larger facility than the RAC Field, with more seating, a scoreboard and greater accessibility, which may allow for larger crowds and press coverage. “We don’t have permission to use the bigger field,” Savannah said, “since we’re a recreational team and they won’t let us.” Savannah noted, however, that “the team is okay with this because the field is closer to the locker rooms,” thus making it “easier to get to.”
One of the major reasons that the team does not have as much recognition as other programs is because the team is fairly young (it was founded in 1993.) Over its 23 years of existence, the team has gone through periods of success and rebuilding. One of the team’s most successful years was 2011, in which it won the Mid Atlantic Conference Championship by blowing out the VCU Rams 31 0. The team advanced to the Conference Championship again in 2013 but fell short in capturing the title. The Patriots also recorded two undefeated seasons in the mid’90s. Savannah said that the team is hoping to rekindle the success the team had in the 2011 and 2012 seasons, as the team is currently in the process of rebuilding. “We’re trying to get back up and become good again,” he said. “This team has a fair amount of good and bad years.” One of the biggest challenges the team has faced, in addition to becoming more wellknown, is simply manpower. The team had to forfeit a few games the previous season due to a lack of players on the roster. There were also reportedly just a handful of players that showed up to practice on time. At least 15 people must be on the roster for the Patriots to play, Savannah said. If the team has fewer than 15 people, they must forfeit as a safety precaution, since players would need to fill in multiple positions and thus face a greater risk of injury. The other challenge the Patriots face is becoming a D1 sport. “Mason had seriously considered starting an NCAA Division I AA football program as early as 1991,” according to the Mason History Project. “At that time the University already had several Division I athletic teams, which meant that a Mason
football team would have to play in either Division IA or IA A.” Mason opted to pursue a NCAA Division IAA program instead of an IA because it would have been cheaper. The decision to establish a Division IAA program came down to a vote by the Board of Visitors in 1998, when “Visitor Robert Lautenberg, Chairman of the Football Task Force, presented the BOV with a 10year funding plan for the football expansion.” The board’s vote “was one of the closest in BOV history,” in which six visitors voted for the plan and six against, which required a tiebreaker vote. That vote came from Rector Marvin Murray, who voted against the motion. Since then, there have been no major pushes to bring a D1 program back to Mason. It does not appear one will form soon, since establishing a program could prove costly for Mason and its students— one of the main concerns held during the 1998 vote. The team follows a regular season schedule that consists of seven games against other club football programs. Those seven regular season games are then followed by the postseason, which culminates in a conference championship game. The Patriots’ season for this year includes two home games (vs. Williamson Tech and the University of Pittsburgh) and three road games (at Coppin State, U Md. Eastern Shore and Longwood University). Their season began Sept. 24, when they faced Ohio State at a neutral field in Pennsylvania. A neutral field is essentially the same as a road game, the players and staff said, since they will be away from home. The team’s home opener will be this Saturday, Oct. 1. against Williamson Tech on the RAC Field.
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(1) Kicker Ray De La Cruz sends the ball towards the goalposts during practice on Sept. 13. (2) Xavier Shannon lines up during practice on Sept. 13.
CLASSIFIEDS Help Wanted
The Country Club of Fairfax is looking for Golf Course / Grounds Care. Full and Part Time positions available, must be able to work mornings. Experience and or knowledge of the game of golf a plus. Excellent pay and benefits based on experience.
The Country Club of Fairfax is looking for Private Event Servers and Bartenders with a flexible schedule that includes weekdays, weekends, holidays and split shifts. Previous fine dining and/or banquet experience, bilingual preferred (Spanish, English). Must be at least 19 years of age to serve alcohol. Minimum two years of food and beverage experience. To apply, please visit https://ccfairfax. talentplushire.com/jobs/.
The Country Club Fairfax is nearing the end of a 7-million-dollar renovation to upgrade our facilities. We are seeking experienced, enthusiastic servers to staff our clubhouse and 3 dining rooms. We are offering competitive pay for qualified full time and part time associates. If you are friendly, enjoy working as part of a team, have attention to detail, can be attentive to the members’ needs and work hard to make our members feel welcome, we want to talk to you! Don’t miss this opportunity to be part of a successful ‘opening team’. For more information and to apply, please visit https://ccfairfax.talentplushire.com/jobs/. ASPIRING MODELS/ TALENT NEEDED for growing Local Fashion promotional company. Gain lots of Exposure, and help promote various fitness/fashion products and services. Part time, $50/hour min, no experience necessary, must be photogenic. Photo(s) required.Call/Text Chris 703-832-1670 leave message
Child Care We are seeking an after school sitter for our two boys ages 10 and 7 yrs. old. We live about 20 minutes from campus. Schedule would be 3-4 days Monday-Thursday 3:30-6:30pm, with an opportunity for additional hours during the evenings or on weekends. Total would be around 12-15 hours per week. The ideal person should be energetic, responsible, reliable, and fun! Responsibilities include picking up boys from the bus stop and driving to some activities, playdates and helping with homework, dinner, etc. Great position for college or graduate student with own transportation. Must have a clean driving record and be a non-smoker. Please contact me at email@example.com or 617-823-4194.
Crosscountry races to triumph at James Madison Invitational Men place first; women, third JAMES STEMPLE | STAFF WRITER
George Mason’s cross country teams secured first and third place during the James Madison Invitational on Sept. 10. The men secured first place, winning their first title of the year, and the women narrowly came in third. The men’s race, just barely shorter than the standard 8K (about 5 miles), had only four teams (including Mason) compete, with Mason being the only school that is in the Atlantic 10 Conference, or A10. The other three were Virginia Military Institute, Longwood University and Christendom College. On the women’s side, which ran a 5.2K (about 3 miles), those same schools participated with the addition of VCU, another A10 team, and JMU.
Despite temperatures moving well into the 90’s with high humidity that day, the men’s team managed to stick closely together in their 7.9K (about five miles). The top five runners from Mason ranked within the top 10 places. Distance runner Adam LaFemina finished first for Mason and third overall, coming in with a time of 26:36.7. Brent Coulter (26:47.5) placed fourth, Grayson Morgan (26:56.4) placed sixth, Dustin Jutras (27:00.6) placed eighth, and Luke Sharkey (27.18.4) placed tenth, rounding out their low score of 27. LaFemina said that “our first three meets of the year,” referencing the fact that this is the second meet of the season, “are usually pretty low key, [we] work together as a team.” “Towards the end of the season, we really test ourselves at the meet before
conferences and the A10’s.” Meanwhile, the women finished third in their 5.2k race (about 3 miles). Distance runner Ciara Donohue placed second overall with a time of 19:30.2, just two seconds shy of the first place finisher, Carol Strock, who competed for JMU. Amber Hawkins (21:21.4) finished fifth, Kyla Carte (21:21.4, 22nd), Sarah Richart (21:35.7, 26th) and Khalilah Hammer (25:44.5, 28th) rounded out the women’s top 5 with a score of 68 points. Both the women’s and men’s team have a few weeks in between their next meet, yet both will be hard at work training and preparing for the A10 Conference Championships, which will begin on October 29. “The next two or three weeks we’re going
to be training really hard to prepare for the A10’s and regionals,” LaFemina said. The training, which includes workouts at their future meet locations such as Oatlands Plantation, is rigorous but seen as necessary. Oatlands Plantation, located in Leesburg, Virginia, will be the site of the Mason Invitational, a track meet that will be hosted by Mason on Oct. 1. “Sometimes, it’s about 12,000 meters worth of work,” Brent Coulter said about hard workouts. “We do a workout [at Oatlands] at least a couple weeks before the actual race.” The team is optimistic that the hard training will pay off come 28 days later, when the A 10 Conference Championships begin. “Whether we [win] or not,” Coulter
said, “you can’t really worry about it too much. But looking forward to it, the goal is always to win.” The efforts of the men’s team have been a response to their finish at last year’s A10’s, where they finished 12th. Now, they look to repeat their success from the James Madison Invitational and carry their momentum into the playoffs. LaFemina said that “individually, and as a team, we’re going to do well. We’re all in better shape, and based off our past workouts, we definitely will move forward as a team.” The Mason Invitational is just one of two meets that remain on the schedule before the A 10 Conference Championships begins. The other is the Wake Forest Invitational held in North Carolina on Oct. 14.
(1) The women’s cross country team running at the 2014 Mason Invitational. (2) The women’s cross country team running at the 2014 Mason Invitational.
2 (PHOTOS COURTSEY OF CRAIG BISACRE/CREATIVE SERVICES