WMU - McDaniel Finishes Second at MAC Championship, Broncos Take Sixth

WMU - McDaniel Finishes Second at MAC Championship, Broncos Take Sixth

Provided by WMU

MOUNT PLEASANT, Mich. - For the first time since 2004 the Western Michigan cross country team has a First Team All-MAC member as freshman Maria McDaniel placed second overall and paced the Broncos to a sixth place finish at the 2014 Mid-American Conference Championships at Central Michigan University on Saturday afternoon.

After running in the top group for the beginning of the race, McDaniel once again pushed towards the head of the pack and never looked back. McDaniel would go on to run a 6k time of 20:26, just five seconds behind the leader on the way to a second place finish. McDaniel is the first to garner First Team All-MAC since Meryl Marsh did so back in 2004, when she finished fourth. It is WMU’s highest placed finisher since Marsh.

“For her to be a freshman and come in second at this big of a meet is absolutely outstanding,” said head coach Kelly Lycan. “She is going to have an exciting career.”

Senior Ann Marie Arseneau came in second for the Broncos and 26th overall with a time of 21:40. Sophomore Daya Wagh came in third for WMU at 22:08, followed by senior Becca Peacock coming in at 22:35. Rounding out the top five was freshman Hanne Christensen with a time of 22:48.

“The top three for us today and all season have been very successful,” said Lycan.

Wrapping up the scoring for WMU was a pair of sophomores in Amy Littlefield and Raychel Figurski. Littlefield came in sixth for WMU and 81st overall after running 23:08. Not far behind was Figurski with a time of 23:36.

The Brown & Gold finished sixth overall, claiming their highest finish at the MAC Championships since 2011 when they finished fourth. The Broncos will have a strong future ahead with seven of the nine competing runners being underclassmen. Toledo was crowned MAC champions, placing all seven of their runners in the top 20.

“We have the beginnings of a really good cross country team,” said Lycan. “Next year this team is going to be a tough team to contend with.”

The Broncos have a week off before heading to Madison, Wis., for the NCAA Great Lakes Regional Championship.