Pallotto, Bender Honored by TCCC

NEWPORT, R.I. - Salve Regina University freshman Paige Pallotto (Woodbridge, Conn.) has been named The Commonwealth Coast Conference (TCCC) Women's Cross Country Runner and Rookie of the Year. Additionally, head coach Dave Bender was named Women's Cross Country Coach of the Year.


This past weekend, Pallotto took first-place at the 2009 The Commonwealth Coast Conference Championship, which was held on the campus of Western New England. She ran the 6,000 meter course in a time of 23:31 and finished nearly a half minute ahead of her closest competitor. For her efforts, she was named Runner and Rookie of the Week by TCCC on Monday for the fifth time this season.


"Paige dominated the field," said assistant women's cross country coach Matt Hird of Pallotto's performance. "Her times have continued to improve with each race this season. Our team, despite finishing second overall to Roger Williams, is a force to be reckoned with in future years."


Pallotto placed first at the season-opening Roger Williams Invitational (Sept. 12) and again at the Connecticut College Invitational (Sept. 26), and placed second at the Western New England College Invitational (Oct. 17).


In his fourth season at the helm of both the men's and women's cross country programs, Bender guided the Seahawks to the fourth conference runner-up finish in school history - two of which have come during his tenure at SRU. Along with Hird, the pair coached the Seahawks to a first-place at the Western New England College Invitational, a second-place finish at the Roger Williams Invitational, and a third-place finish at the Pop Crowell Invitational at Gordon College.