Lehmann Breaks Course Record at All-Ohio


Senior Emma Lehmann crosses the finish line at last Friday’s All-Ohio Championships. Lehmann finished first in the race, making her the top female runner in Ohio.

Bri Di Monda

The men’s and women’s cross country teams competed in the All-Ohio Collegiate Championship on Friday, Oct. 3 in Cedarville, Ohio, where the teams finished in first and second place in Division III respectively.

Individually, senior Emma Lehmann came in first place, beating out competitors from Division I and Division II programs. This significant achievement makes Lehmann the top runner in the entire state of Ohio. Senior captain Kyle Neal was not far behind, coming in at third place.

On the men’s side, junior Geno Arthur finished seventh and junior Rob Morten finished in 10th place. Both are notable accomplishments in the competitive race, as the race drew competition from across the entire state.

Every collegiate cross country team in Ohio competes in the All-Ohio race, with a total of about 1,000 runners competing from all three collegiate divisions. As the first large meet of the season, it’s an important race for Oberlin each year.

This year the varsity and regular races had to be combined due to the possibility of rain, doubling the number of runners in each race.

“Usually there’s a varsity race where the top seven runners all compete, but because of the weather, we all raced together,” said Neal. “There were about 500 people running.”

Both the men’s and women’s teams placed well despite the last-minute change in race size and a series of injuries. Junior Sam Coates-Finke couldn’t run for the Yeomen, and the Yeowomen were also down two of their top five runners.

Lehmann came in first place overall in the women’s race, setting a course record of 21:41.55 and beating the next runner by 12 seconds.

“It just kind of happened,” Lehmann said. “I knew a mile from the finish that I would win, but I definitely didn’t go into the race thinking that would happen. I feel like I ran a smart race. I was good about being patient early on. I didn’t make any stupid moves. It’s mostly about reading your competition and knowing when people are getting tired and when it’s important to stick with someone who’s running ahead.”

Although the race marked the end of the women’s three-year winning streak at the All-Ohio race, both the men’s and women’s teams ran phenomenal individual times.

“Individual performances were fine; we’re just missing two big guns,” said Cross Country Coach Ray Appenheimer. “If you look at individual performances throughout, I was so happy with how everyone ran.”

Geno Arthur placed seventh overall for the men on his way to becoming the first Oberlin College athlete ever to run under 25 minutes in an 8000-meter race. Kyle Neal also placed well, coming in third with a time of 22:03.90.

“I don’t really remember [the race], which I guess is a good thing,” Neal said. “Usually if I don’t remember a race it means I was running well. It was different because I was running alone. Usually I’m with a teammate or a group of people.”

Although Lehmann had hoped the women’s team would win first place for Division III, she was happy with how the team ran overall.

“This is a good time in the season to get second. It keeps us on our toes and keeps us really trying. But yeah, a lot of people on the team did really well,” she said.

As the season progresses, the men’s and women’s teams hope to continue running well, and they have set lofty objectives for themselves for the rest of the fall season.

“The women’s team has big goals,” Appenheimer said. “They want to finish top five in the nation, and the men want to qualify for nationals. I think both goals are certainly within our grasp this year.”

Both teams will compete next in the Inter-Regional Rumble at home on Saturday, Oct. 18 at 11 a.m.