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SMC Cross Country: Belles earn fourth in tournament

Observer Staff Report | Monday, September 2, 2013

Saint Mary’s kicked off its 2013 campaign by placing fourth at the Wabash Hokum Karem on Saturday in Crawfordsville, Ind.

The Belles notched two top-10 finishes in the field of the 31 pairs that competed in the relay-style race. The tandem of senior Jessica Biek and freshman Brittany Beeler led the way by finishing in fifth place with a time of 23:51. 

Biek and Beeler’s mark was a little more than one minute behind the relay’s winning pair of Marian senior Lauren Borchelt and sophomore Ann Kuntz, who finished the four-mile race in just 22:43.

Junior Samee Chittenden and sophomore Allie Danhof also started the season on a high note, as their 24:11 time was good enough for seventh place. 

After graduating six runners last year, Saint Mary’s welcomes five freshmen this season. In addition to Beeler, freshman Kaitlyn Alessi was the only newcomer to score points in her debut. Running with senior Sarah Thompson, Alessi produced a time of 25:53, good for 15th place overall and 12th place out of the scored runners.

Other contributors for the Belles this season will include senior Colette Curtis, juniors Erin Knauf and Emily Getz and sophomore Katelyn Dunn. This weekend, the returning runners finished just behind Thompson and Alessi, as the team of Curtis and Knauf and duo of Dunn and Getz had times of 25:55 and 26:02, respectively.

Debuting for the Belles, the freshmen pairing of Kathryn Marshall and Maggie Pacana finished in 26:34.10, good for 21st place. Freshman Colleen Ogren and sophomore Holly Higdon finished in 25th place with a time of 27:18.

Saint Mary’s will host its annual Alumnae Race on Saturday at 9 a.m. The team will next compete in the Calvin Knight Invitational in Grand Rapids, Mich., on Sept. 14.