After fighting through injuries, Misenti looks to stay healthy in final season at Syracuse
Forrest Misenti ran his first 5K when he was 5 years old. And, he never stopped running them since.
But it’s taken a toll on his body. Misenti, a fifth-year senior on the Syracuse cross country team, has had four stress fractures in his feet.
The most recent occurred in a race in February, the last time he competed.
That will change Saturday morning when Misenti and Syracuse open the season in the Harry Lang Invitational in Hamilton, N.Y. The men’s team is ranked No. 12 in the U.S. Track and Field and Cross Country Coaches Association preseason poll released Monday.
“The invite on Saturday will be my first race in a while,” Misenti said.
The women’s team is ranked No. 9 in the national poll. Both the men and women’s team won the Northeast Regionals for the third consecutive season in 2011. In the Preseason Northeast Regional Rankings, the women were ranked No. 1 and the men were ranked No. 2.
Misenti, of Haddam, Conn., said he expects the men’s and women’s teams to have record seasons. But he’s expecting this season to be his best, too.
At Xavier High School, Misenti earned All-American and All-New England honors, as well as finished third in the cross country state championships during his senior year. He was also team captain and MVP during his senior season.
Not bad, considering he didn’t even think about competing in college until his junior year of high school.
Now, as a redshirt senior at Syracuse, he’s one of the leaders on the men’s team. But it’s been a long journey to this point.
In 2009, he placed 13th in the NCAA Northeast Regional with a time of 31:23. Missenti also finished 17th in the Big East Championship that year, crossing the line in 25:30.
A year later, he finished 126th in the NCAA Championship with a time of 31:38. Misenti also earned All-Northeast Region and All-Big East honors, leading the team to its second straight conference championship with a 6th-place finish and time of 25:19.
In 2011, he once again earned All-Region honors at the NCAA Northeast Regionals and finished 21st at the Big East Championship in October.
And in February, his fourth stress fracture delayed his running career.
Injury has been Misenti’s Achilles’ heel while at Syracuse. But he believes he has finally overcome all that.
At the end of the school year, Misenti is scheduled to receive his college diploma. His major: nutrition.
Misenti said he decided to major in nutrition primarily to enhance his running.
Following his last race in February, Misenti took seven to eight weeks off to let his foot heal. He has been completely healthy ever since and has high hopes for this season.
As of now, Misenti has no specific individual goals for the season. He said those goals will come one or two races into the season.
For now, Misenti is concerned with accomplishing team goals. He thinks the team is capable of winning the Northeast Regionals for the fourth year in a row, winning the Big East and finishing in the Top 10 at the National Championships.
Since this is Misenti’s final season competing for theOrange, it holds a special meaning for him. Despite his past successes, Misenti said he is not entirely satisfied with his Syracuse running career.
He feels there is an “untapped potential” that his injuries have prevented him from achieving. And this season, Misenti is holding nothing back.
Said Misenti: “I want to go out on top.”
Contact T.J.: firstname.lastname@example.org
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