Refusing To Be Dropped
Last January, citing the need to "exercise fiscal responsibility and remain in compliance with Title IX," officials at the University of Delaware unceremoniously dropped men's track and cross country from its intercollegiate offerings.
So what do you do if you are a die-hard trackie and just can't imagine hanging up your spikes? The answer for those who remained — Start the Delaware Running Club.
The Delaware Running Club gets a small stipend of just over $2,000 a year from the school. Additionally, members pay dues to help cover expenses like meet entries and fuel for road trips.
Last Saturday 10 members of the club traveled to Van Cortlandt Park in the Bronx to compete at The Fordham Fiasco, where the group placed third in the unseeded race. Permitted to compete in the Division 1 race with the other top teams, Delaware RC would have likely placed somewhere in the middle.
The night before the meet the young men split up between two homes, those of the parents of sophomore Robert Gorecki and junior Aidan Gallaso. Both had competed in the NYSPHSAA Cross Country Championships in high school — Gallaso for Suffern High in Rockland County and Gorecki for Somers High in Westchester County.
Before the race, Gorecki talked of the challenges of being a club sport, rather than a fully-funded program.
"It's hard. We don't have access to the trainers or the athlete weight rooms. We have to handle all of the administration ourselves. But we all love to run so we keep going."