Cross Country team slow and steady in championship

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Nathan Pearson, Staff Writer

Wayne State made strides in the right direction at the Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference (NSIC) cross country championship in Moorhead, Minnesota on Saturday.

The women improved one place over last year, finishing 13th out of 15 teams, while the men finished 10th out of 12 teams for the second year
in a row.

Antoine Bardou, who has been the fastest Wildcat for the last two years, ran a time of 25:52 on the 8k course to place 30th, three spots better than his place last year. Bardou’s place is the highest of any Wildcat at the NSIC meet since 2010, when John Kern finished seventh.

“I’m relatively happy with how we did on the men’s side,” Head Coach Marlon Brink said. “We were capable of breaking through the top 10, but we finished just four points behind Southwest Minnesota State.”

Other finishers for the men were Jack Doughty (46, 26:19), Isaias Solorio (69, 26:58), Brock Hegarty (87, 27:51), Bailey Peckham (90, 28:06), Nathan Pearson (93, 28:39), Nathan Heimer (104, 30:15), and Jesus Arellano (105, 20:21).

Freshman Molly McCartney has been the women’s top runner all year, and she was again on Saturday, running a time of 23:47 on the 6k course to finish 62nd.

Other finishers for the women were Joan Jelimo (95, 25:01), Kim Lowman (99, 25:05), Brianna Crouch (117, 25:55), Josephine Peitz (122, 26:50), Sabrina Sack (130, 28:13), and Mary Alderson (135, 29:52).

“The women maybe could have done better,” Brink said. “But it’s still a step in the right direction. Molly and Kim both had very big PR’s.”

In the team standings, Augustana won easily on the men’s side with 36 points, followed by Minnesota-Duluth (98), Sioux Falls (109), U-Mary (121), and Minnesota State (129) to round out the top five.

The undefeated Mason Philips of Sioux Falls won with a time of 24:06, almost 30 seconds ahead of second place. Philips is also a very versatile runner, as he is the reigning conference champion in the 800-meter run as well.

It was a runaway for first place on the women’s side as well. U-Mary won with 30 points, followed by Minnesota-Duluth (74), Augustana (75), Winona State (114), and Minnesota State (138) to round out the
top five.

U-Mary was led by defending national champion, Alexis Zeis, who won with a time of 20:49.

WSC has two weeks off before the NCAA Regional meet in Kearney on Nov. 4. The top three teams from at each regional meet plus eight wildcards qualify for nationals. Teams from the NSIC, MIAA and GAC will be competing at Kearney.