Women's cross-country outperforms Division I schools
In their second race of the season, Biola women's cross-country did very well at the San Diego State University Invitational as the only non-NCAA Div. I school, placing second overall.
The Eagles scored 47 points — three points ahead of San Diego State and eight behind the University of Southern California, who came in first with 39 points on Saturday at Balboa Park. Originally, the results had San Diego State winning the race because an unattached runner, who placed fourth, was accidently added into their score.
“I think it was a pretty good race for us, especially considering it was our first 5k and our first traveling meet,” freshman runner Kellian Hunt said. “That’s a lot of new things in one week and it was a psychologically tough race too.”
Eagles still successful in longer race
Despite the longer race and difficult course, the Eagles managed to place their top five runners in the top 16 spots. Hunt led the way for the Eagles and placed sixth overall with a time of 19:03. Junior Chelsea Janzen and senior Rachel Stump both came close behind, in eighth and ninth places, with times of 19:10 and 19:11. Junior Kasey Schalich placed 13th at 19:29 and freshman Ilima Kung came in 16th place with 19:39.
“In the race itself, I thought this was pretty good,” head coach Jonathan Zimmerman said. “But we might have been able to bring a little bit more. We don't do this very often, race against teams like this, so we want to do this very well.”
The Eagles were the first to get their last runner past the finish as freshman Neysa Mains finished with a time of 19:51. Freshman Anika Gasner placed 30th overall and seventh for the Eagles in points, crossing the finish line with a time of 20:23.
“San Diego State practiced on that course five times in the last two weeks,” Zimmerman said. “It’s their meet, their course, they wanted it but we were fortunate enough to go in ahead of them this time.”
Fifth and sixth finishers prove key for Biola
Three of San Diego State’s racers managed to finish ahead of Hunt, but Biola’s fifth and sixth runners helped keep the Eagles at a low score. USC sophomore Erica Capellino took first place overall, crossing the line at 18:11.
The Biola women's team does not plan to race again until next month as they continue to prepare for the NAIA National Championships.
“We are going to take it one practice at a time,” Hunt said. “Just work through those rough practices, stay focused, stay determined and make sure we get the proper rest.”
The men's team is scheduled to race on Sept. 29 at the Pomona-Pitzer Invitational in Claremont.