September 23, 2015

WOMEN’S CROSS COUNTRY | Red Take First at Yellowjacket Invitational

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By BRITTANY BIGGS

The Red women’s cross country team continued their hot streak this weekend at the Yellowjacket Invitational in Rochester. The team competed in the women’s 6K against four other teams and came out on top. Taylor Spillane was the team’s big winner, crossing the line first with a time of 21:32.5. Teammate Caroline Keller came in after her teammate at a time of 21:59.3 to take second place. Sophomores Erin McLaughlin and Shannon Hugard came in fourth and fifth respectively, and freshman Grace Todd was able to fight for an impressive sixth place finish. The team was able to score enough points necessary to win the YellowJacket team title. It was a fantastic meet for the team, as the team celebrated its homecoming weekend with a victory.

The team had a lot to be proud of after this weekend’s meet.
“I am most proud of the way our team worked together,” Spillane said. “This year we have put a lot of emphasis on being there for each other and making sure everyone is feeling their best each and every day. This means talking with each other when we are worried about something or just simply offering a hug when you see one your teammates stressed.”

With such an impressive meet under their belt, it seems all of the effort in the off season is starting to pay off.

“Our team is progressing exactly as Artie has planned,” said Spillane. “He has definitely tweaked our training style and it is paying off already. He has put a lot of emphasis on the end of the year.  This has us working hard now and not necessarily feeling 100 percent come race day. This is important because the work we put in now will be paying off a few weeks from now.”

Despite the achievements that the team has earned, it is still focused on moving forward and progressing as a team and reaching its goal of qualifying for the NCAA Championship

“This team has done a great job of focusing on what is directly in front of them,” head coach Archie Smith said. “One day at a time, one workout at a time, one race at a time.There’s been a lot of belief that we’ll be at our best next month and in November and so the team has done a great job embracing the opportunity presented to them on each day of training and at each race.”

This team has done a great job of focusing on what is directly in front of them.

“There’s been a lot of belief that we’ll be at our best next month and in November and so the team has done a great job embracing the opportunity presented to them on each day of training and at each race,” co-captain Kristen Niedrach said. “They know that each of these opportunities are precious and I’m very happy with how they’ve been taking advantage of those opportunities to this point.”

The season only gets more rigorous from here. But the team is prepared to meet the challenge.

“Our remaining invitational and championship meets are at this distance so I expect they’ll bring a lot of confidence to our next meet at Lehigh on October 2nd,” said Smith.  “I’m excited to see how they’ll bring the great attitude and approach already on display to more competitive situations.

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