Eagles excel in Cougar Challenge

Both the men’s and women’s cross country teams finished in the top two.


Photos courtesy of Emily Heisinger

Keaton Moore, Writer

The Eagles’ cross country team traveled to California State University San Marcos on Oct. 15 and found success in the Cougar Challenge. While the men’s team finished in second place, the women brought home first place for the first time in 2016. The Eagles boasted seven runners in the top 10 of both the men and women’s races combined.

Eagles conquer Cougar Challenge

Although the men’s squad fell 28 points short of San Marcos for first place, three of their runners finished high in the standings. Freshman Gabe Plendcio’s 25:28 time placed him fifth in the race and first among his fellow Eagle runners in the 8k. Sophomore Ryan Thompson and junior Miles Brubacher each finished within 30 seconds of Plendcio. Thompson finished at 25:39 in eighth place, narrowly beating Brubacher, who ran 25:45 and took ninth place.

Shortly after, the women’s team took first place in their 5k race by 12 points. Sophomore Emily Ransom led the charge and finished in second place with a 17:31 time, just one second behind first place. Right on her heels, junior Hannah Hunsaker and senior Lyndee Dawson took third and fourth, the former at 17:49 and the latter at 17:52. Junior Stephanie Croy finished eighth with a 18:13 time.

After finishing in the top three in each of their meets this year, the women’s team finally earned first place. They started off the season taking third place in the Biola Invitational and took second in the next two meets. In addition, the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics recently ranked them as No. 2 in the nation. Meanwhile, the men’s team is still on the hunt for first place, a feat the team has not accomplished in the past two years.

Both teams hope their momentum will lead them to success in their upcoming meet at the Titan Invitational on Oct. 21 at 4:45 p.m.

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