Women’s Cross Country Best in State

Jesse Kohler, Staff Writer

The women’s cross country team established its place as the best team in the state at the Division III All-Ohio Championship Meet last Saturday in Cedarville, Ohio. The Yeowomen all placed in the top 40 out of 298 runners. Although the team was not at its full strength, the six girls who ran helped get the entire team to its goal — first place.

Sophomore Lindsay Neal, who came in fifth with a time of 18 minutes, 31.24 seconds said, “The race went well. It was a deep field so it started out pretty fast, but I think we did a really good job of staying tough and sticking together, especially knowing that one of our top seven runners was not able to compete in the race.”

Sophomore Carey Lyons was unable to compete, but her classmates led the way for the team. Emma Lehmann finished second and Sarah Jane Kerwin finished 14th to join Neal. Seniors and co-captains Kristina Witcher and Caroline Martin provided the push from behind, crossing the finish line in 19th and 39th place, respectively.

The All-Ohio meet is a positive predictor of how the Yeowomen can expect to perform at bigger meets later this season.

As Witcher explained, “All-Ohio is a really good meet because there are a lot of people in each race. It is similar to the NCAA meet because you could be running the best race of your life, but still be pretty far back in the race. I think it helps us practice running in a pack and trusting each other to know what pace we need to be running regardless of where the rest of the race is. While the race is happening it can be hard to tell what individuals you need to beat to win the division, so you just have to run as hard as you can and wait for the results to come out.”

The five-kilometer track posed few issues for the Yeowomen. The average time run by the team was just under 18 minutes and 46 seconds, which means that if the Yeowomen had competed against the Division I teams who participated in the race, they would have beaten two of them.

“The last thousand meters were pretty painful,” said Neal. “But that was expected, and we stayed strong and finished really well.”

“We’re off to an awesome start,” agreed Witcher.

Both cross country teams return to competition when they host the Inter-Regional Rumble on Oct. 13.