Women's Cross Country Grabs Third Place At A-10 Championships
Oct. 31, 2009
St. Louis, Mo. - The UMass women's cross country team took third place out of 14 teams at the Atlantic 10 Championship meet this Saturday. Led by A-10 Rookie of the Year Courtney Baldwin, the Minutewomen had their best performance since 2000 at the conference meet. Dayton won the Atlantic 10 Championship title with 72 points, followed by Charlotte with 98 points, and UMass with 109 points.
Despite the muddy conditions, UMass was able to stay focused and still put on a very strong performance. The wet course proved to be trying, but head coach Julie LaFreniere expressed her ultimate satisfaction with the performance of her team. "I am extremely proud of this group and very pleased that we came away with a third place finish," said LaFreniere. "The conditions made for a tough race, but all of our runners battled through it and really stepped it up."
Baldwin was UMass' top finisher, and received all-conference honors taking ninth place overall with a time of 20:09. She now enters the record books as the second UMass runner to ever receive the Atlantic 10 Rookie of the Year award, joining Kristen Cisowski who helped the Minutewomen to a first place finish at the A-10s in 1998.
Redshirt junior co-captain Shiyi Zan added a phenomenal performance as well, crossing at 20:36 and finishing only two seconds away from being named all-conference. Zan ended the race in 17th place out of the field of 140 harriers.
Saturday's race also marked sophomore Karen Roa's return to the UMass top five finishers. Roa finished with a time of 20:40, which was good for 19th overall. Fellow sophomore Claire Pettit was not far behind Roa, as Pettit came in at 20:48 and in 26th place overall.
Rounding out the top five for the Minutewomen was freshman Danielle Allocco. Allocco's time of 21:09 slotted her as the ninth best rookie and the 38th best finisher.
Juniors Lauren Stocker and Gina Perno also had notable finishes, as the two helped hold back fourth place Duquesne as UMass' sixth and seventh runners. Stocker (21:24) placed 49th overall while Perno (21:46) took 69th overall.
UMass will be back in action in two weeks when the squad heads to Boston, Mass. on Saturday, Nov. 14 for the NCAA Regional Qualifier. The women's race is set to kick off at 3:30 p.m.