Brunmeier and WMU Take First Overall at Cardinal Classic

Brunmeier and WMU Take First Overall at Cardinal Classic

Provided by WMU


MUNCIE, Ind. -- The Western Michigan cross country team took first place at the Cardinal Classic hosted by Ball State on Friday afternoon with Amber Brunmeier taking the overall title for the Broncos.

Western Michigan had four of its top five runners finish in the top 10. Brunmeier's first place 6k time was 22:05.1. It was the first top overall finish in her collegiate career. The Broncos finished with 30 points, edging out second place Ball State (54). Miami finished in third place with 64 while Kent finished in fourth with 70 and Bowling Green finished in last with 140.

"It was so great to see Amber get her first win today," said head coach Kelly Lycan." She has worked so hard and is such a fighter and it was just really great to see her finish like that."

The Broncos started out quickly on the flat course but melted back into the pack to let opponents take the brunt of the high winds.

"Coach (Dani) Prince has done a really good job to formulating race plans with the girls and teaching them how to get out of the gate properly," said  Lycan about assistant coach Dani Prince. "We have really been working on our starts and she has done a great job with them and they positioned themselves very well today."

Rachel Whitley finished in second overall with a time of 22:27.7, while Jeriesha Tucker finished fourth overall with a time of 22:41.6 to finish in the top five. Bangor, Mich., native Aisha Hodge rounded up the top 10 finishers for the Broncos with a time of 22:57.4, good enough for ninth overall.

In one of the final races of her career, senior Autumn Grayson finished in the Bronco Top 5 for the first time in her career. The Niles, Mich., native finished 14th overall with a personal best time of 23:06.6, improving on her previous personal best by over two minutes.

Another senior also had the best race of her career. Katie Deatherage broke the 24 minute mark in a 6k for the first time in her career with a time of 23:52.3

Western Michigan gets the weekend off next week in preparation for the 2011 Mid-American Conference Championship at the very same course they competed on at the Cardinal Classic.