EMU - Women's Cross Country Downs a Pair of Ranked Teams

EMU - Women's Cross Country Downs a Pair of Ranked Teams

Provided by EMU

Nashville, Tenn. (EMUEagles.com) – Despite facing plenty of adversity due to poor weather conditions, the Eastern Michigan University women's cross country team ran to a first-place finish at the Commodore Classic today, Sept. 17, in Nashville, Tenn. The Eagles, who finished with 68 points, were able to defeat a pair of ranked teams, as No. 19 Mississippi State and No. 26 Vanderbilt finished sixth and third, respectively.

"It was a good win for us," exclaimed Head Coach Sue Parks. "The race was delayed for an hour due to thunderstorms and lightning, and the girls did a great job of keeping their focus. Our depth has improved significantly since last year and we've closed the gap between our scorers. That was the big difference for us today."

The race, which was scheduled to begin at 10 a.m. Central time, was delayed due to rain, making the course much tougher due to muddy conditions. However, the Green and White did not let this deter them, as the squad took home three spots within the top-15 out of a field of 261 harriers. Additionally, Eastern posted the best average time of the meet by 10 seconds at 17:26.

"The course was very muddy and the team handled the conditions well," explained Parks. "It will be nice to have another two weeks to train before our next meet, as some of our athletes who raced on the track late into the summer continue to round into shape."

After having a weekend free of competition, junior Jordann McDermitt (Davison, Mich. – Davison) paced EMU in their toughest meet of the season to date. The Davison, Mich. native crossed the finish line in third with a time of 17:02.9, which was just five seconds slower than her season opening time in perfect running conditions, and three seconds behind the second-place finisher from Louisville.

After making her cross country debut two weeks ago, redshirt sophomore Natalie Cizmas (Clinton Twp., Mich. – Chippewa Valley) continued her ascent, running to a ninth-place finish with a time of 17:17.4, which was seven seconds quicker than her first race. Also nabbing a spot in the top-15 was junior Jenna Wyns (Londerzeel, Belgium – Sportschol KA2), who took 14th after clocking in at 17:28.6.

The final two scorers for the Green and White were senior Alsu Bogdanova (Kazan, Russia – Lyceum #83) and sophomore Sydney Meyers (Zionsville, Ind. – Zionsville Community). Bogdanova finished just eight seconds behind Wyns, crossing the finish line in 17:36.9 to take 18th, while Meyers nabbed 24th in 17:42.9

EMU got a big boost to the lineup in the form of redshirt senior Sofie Gallein (Gits, Belgium – University of Leuven), as the Belgian made her season debut at the meet. Gallein had a solid season-opening race, taking 31st and posting a time of 17:50.6.

The Green and White will not race next weekend, but will resume action the following week at the prestigious Notre Dame Invitational, Sept. 30, in South Bend, Ind.

Team Results

1. Eastern Michigan 68

EMU Individual Results

3. Jordann McDermitt 17:02.9

9. Natalie Cizmas 17:17.4

14. Jenna Wyns 17:28.6

18. Alsu Bogdanova 17:36.9

24. Sydney Meyers 17:42.9

31. Sofie Gallein 17:50.6

77. Rebekah Branham 18:23.5

108. Danielle Bentzley 18:41.9

130. Allie Knoll 18:58.8