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Women Edge No. 14 Virginia at Adidas XC Challenge

          Release: 09/16/2016
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Adidas XC Challenge
WakeMed Soccer Park – Cary, N.C.
Men’s Results (6K): 9th out of 13 Teams (255 Pts)
Men’s Top Performer: Crew Kosiorek Finishes 45th (19:09.5)
Women’s Results (5K): 6th out of 22 Teams (169 Pts)
Women’s Top Performer: Tori Churchill Finishes 24th (18:08.3)
Up Next: Royals Challenge – McAlpine Park – Charlotte, N.C. – Fri, Oct. 7

CARY, N.C. – The College of Charleston cross country program faced the highest level of competition its faced all season at the Adidas XC Challenge, and performed admirably with the women taking sixth and the men finishing ninth.

The women raced against a field of 22 teams ranging from Division I opponents and non-Division I opponents alike, many of whom were ranked by the USTFCCCA in national and regional polls. Finishing sixth with 169 points, the Cougars were just four points back of East Carolina, but more importantly, seven points ahead of Virginia, the No. 14 ranked team in the nation.

As has become standard this year, Tori Churchill once again finished first among the Cougars with a 5K time of 18:08.3 to finish 24th overall. That time eviscerates her previous personal best by over 40 seconds, and in so doing rockets her up the CofC all-time list to fifth-fastest in school history. Ellen Feringa also cracked the list at No. 9 with a time of 18:24.6, finishing 31st just behind Carlee Cassidy (18:17.8) in 27th.

Marissa Small-Towns took the fourth scoring spot with a 47th-place time of 18:57.6, and for the first time in her collegiate career, Emma Jennings scored points for the Cougars, finishing 71st with a time of 19:40.3. The Cougars were aggressive in the latter stages of the race, with their top four runners picking off a combined 43 positions in the final 3K.

“I was pleased with how well Ellen, Carlee and Tori worked together during the race,” head coach Amy Seago said. “Tori PRed for the first time in a while, and came away feeling good. We had some big breakthroughs today, and it’s exciting to see our confidence growing each week.”

The men meanwhile were pitted with an unorthodox 6K race, and unlike the women, they ran exclusively against Division I opposition. That didn’t phase Crew Kosiorek, who once again finished first on the team with a 45th place finish, crossing the finish line with a time of 19:09.5. Hayden DiBona finished close behind in 49th (19:19.2), and Sam Beattie was the third Cougar across the finish line in 74th (20:04.9).

Not that his mojo was missing to begin with, but sophomore Grant Gauthier nonetheless got some of it back Friday with his 78th overall finish (20:16.6). It was the first time he’d finished fourth among the Cougars since he did it last season at the NCAA Regionals. Josh Tierney closed out the scoring for CofC, taking 86th (20:16.6). Kosiorek, DiBona and Gauthier all turned up the tempo late, each improving at least four positions in the final 3000 meters of the race.

“Crew did a good job leading us on the men’s side today,” Seago said. “Hayden hung close with him, Sam proved he’s a consistent performer, and Grant had a better race today too. Jack Beattie has been feeling under the weather all week, and for him to pick up nine people from the middle of the race shows how mentally strong he is.”

The Cougars of both genders also found a good measure of success against CAA-rival Elon, even though the Phoenix did not field a full squad. The Top 4 women and Top 2 men all finished faster than Elon’s top women’s and men’s finisher respectively.

“Today was a good day for us,” Seago said. “This is a challenging course with some nice uphills. I thought we handled ourselves very well and stayed composed, and we’re only going to get stronger as the season goes on.”

The Cougars will now enter a lengthy break in the schedule, and will have three weeks purely devoted to training before resuming competition. They will do so at McAlpine Park in Charlotte, N.C. for the Royals Challenge on Oct. 7.

45. Crew Kosiorek (19:09.5)
49. Hayden DiBona (19:19.2)
74. Sam Beattie (20:04.9)
78. Grant Gauthier (20:16.6)
86. Josh Tierney (20:40.0)
89. Jack Beattie (20:49.1)
93. Logan Veatch (21:01.5)
95. Jarred Silverman (21:05.1)
99. Andrew Tyler (21:14.6)

24. Tori Churchill (18:08.3)*
27. Carlee Cassidy (18:17.8)
31. Ellen Feringa (18:24.6)*
47. Marissa Small-Towns (18:57.6)*
71. Emma Jennings (19:40.3)*
76. Hannah Lopez (19:54.5)
93. Lizzie Parrish (20:36.3)
95. Mary Kate Brelsford (20:51.5)
108. Kallie Golicher (21:38.4)
122. Jace Kosiorek (22:17.3)

* - Denotes Collegiate Personal Best