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SMC Cross Country: Saint Mary’s races in Catholic Championship

Brian Hartnett | Monday, September 17, 2012

Competing in a stacked field of 34 teams, Saint Mary’s earned a 28th place finish in its short trip to Notre Dame for Friday’s National Catholic Championship at the Notre Dame Golf Course.

The Belles finished in 15th place in the race’s Division II (DII) standings, which consisted of 21 teams ranging from Division II to the NAIA level.  Saint Mary’s finished above Division II programs Newman and Notre Dame College, as well as two of its Division III counterparts and two NAIA programs.

Saint Mary’s senior Elizabeth Majewski said she was impressed with her team’s performance.

“It was our last [five-kilometer] of the season, and I think we all ran a very competitive race,” Majewski said. “Being close to home, we had a great support group to cheer us on as well.”

Junior Jessica Biek continued her strong season, finishing 29th in the DII division and recording the top time for the Belles with a mark of 19:22.8. Majewski followed her, breaking her personal record in the five-kilometer for the second time in as many weeks with a mark of 20:25.6.

Majewski said her success this season can be attributed to her team’s workout routine.

“The workouts and team runs at practice in addition to my summer training has greatly benefited my races,” Majewski said. “I am excited to finish my senior year as strongly as possible.”

Seniors Emma Baker, Julia Kenney and Sarah Copi rounded out Saint Mary’s top five times, as the trio all finished in the top-100 of the DII division. Baker finished in 79th with a time of 20:39.3, Kenney recorded a 93rd place finish in a time of 21:01.0 and Copi wrapped up the team’s score with a time of 21:09.1.

In addition, six team members competed in the meet’s “junior varsity” race. Junior Colette Curtis turned in the team’s best time with a mark of 21:21.0 to finish 38th in the field. Senior Dani Haydell finished in the team’s second spot with a time of 22:44.2, finishing 63rd overall.

Majewski said she was impressed with the team’s performance in both races but was eagerly looking forward for the team to reunite and run together.

“Both groups had great races,” Majewski said. “For most of the season, however, we have the privilege of running as a team in our races and thus pushing each other.”

Saint Mary’s will have the opportunity to run together again Friday, when the Belles host the MIAA Jamboree. The Jamboree, which the Belles last hosted in 2008, will feature all nine MIAA conference members. Majewski said she believes the team will be a major competitor at its home course.

“Jamboree promises to be one of the highlights of our season, and we are all very excited for Friday,” Majewski said. “We have a strong team this season and close packs during races, and I hope the race will show the hard work we have put in this season so far.”

Saint Mary’s will take to its home course this Friday at the MIAA Jamboree at 6 p.m.

Contact Brian Hartnett at bhartnet@nd.edu