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SMC Cross Country: Saint Mary’s looks to rebound

Brian Hartnett | Wednesday, October 10, 2012

After competing in a tough field at the Gibson Family Pre-National Meet last weekend, Saint Mary’s will travel to Winneconne, Wisc., on Saturday to compete in the UW-Oshkosh Brooks Invitational.

The Belles finished 22nd in a field of 30 teams last Saturday at the Gibson Family Pre-National Meet, held at the LaVern Gibson Championship Course in Terre Haute, Ind. Junior Jessica Biek recorded the top time for the Belles, finishing 105th overall in a field of more than 320 runners with a time of 22:24.0. Seniors Emma Baker and Elizabeth Majewski rounded out the top three for Saint Mary’s, as Baker finished in 134th with a time of 24:47.4 and Majewski came in two spots behind her with a final mark of 24:49.6.

Majewski said the close finishes at the top reflect the team-oriented nature of the Belles.

“We push each other to reach our individual and group goals,” Majewski said. “We all have worked together very well this season, and I think this has contributed to our successful races.”

This week, Saint Mary’s will turn its attention to the UW-Oshkosh Brooks Invitational, the team’s final tune-up before the MIAA Championships on Oct. 27. The meet, held at the same course that hosted last year’s Division III cross country championships, will feature 35 teams from across the nation. Last year’s invitational champion was Washington University in Saint Louis, who subsequently returned to the course a month later to capture the Division III national championship. Despite the tough field, Majewski said the invitational would serve as good preparation for the upcoming conference championships.

“These teams will push us to run fast races and hopefully shave off the seconds needed to run very competitive races at our final races of the season,” Majewski said.

Additionally, Majewski said Saint Mary’s needs to focus on being mentally strong in order to record some higher finishes.

“We need to remain tough and competitive, passing as many runners from other teams as possible,” she said.

Saint Mary’s will compete in the UW-Oshkosh Brooks Invitational on Saturday at 12:15 p.m. at Lake Breeze Golf Club in Winneconne, Wisc.

Contact Brian Hartnett at bhartnet@nd.edu