Copyright 2016; Wilmington University. All rights reserved. File photo taken by Frank Stallworth.
SAINT LEO, Fla. - - Looking to make a return trip to the state in November, the Wilmington University cross country teams competed at the Saint Leo Invitational, an NCAA Division II National Preview meet on Saturday morning on the Abbey Golf Course.
The men were led by a pair of fourth and fifth place finishes to garner 93 points and finish fourth out of the seven competing teams. The women earned 229 points and finished ninth overall on Saturday morning.
Senior Ken Fontal out-kicked teammate Isaac Ndirangu, finishing in fourth overall in the 8K event with a time of 27:01.41. Ndirangu crossed the line just behind Fontal with a time of 27:03.64 and in fifth place. No one was catching the overall winner from Saint Leo, as Ronald Cheserek beat the field by over 26 seconds with a time of 26:14.30.
Miguel Suero gave the Wildcats 17 points with an 18th place finish, crossing the line in 28:16.05. Korey Jeffries gave the Wildcats 23 more points with a 24th place finish, completing the even in 29:09.86. Manuel Suero rounded out the Wildcats scoring with 44 points, finishing 49th overall with a time of 31:34.11.
The host Lions won the event with 41 points followed by Flagler (62 points) and August (78 points) to round out the top three.
The women were led by sophomore Tori Vickers' 34th place finish as she earned the team 33 points. She finished the 6K course in 27:19.07. Junior Rachel Jones brought in 36 points with a 38th place finish, crossing the line in 27:36.44.
Senior Christine Czajkowski brought in 48 points with a 52nd overall finish, coming in with a time of 28:33.01. Tara Langan earned 55 points with a 61st place finish, crossing the line in 30:03.45. Joelle Prettyman rounded out the Wildcats' scoring with 57 points, finishing with a time of 30:13.43 for 63rd overall. Freshman Emily Kockott rounded out the Wildcats on the course with a 65th place finish, running in 34:09.26.
The Lions' Colett Rampf won the event by nearly a minute and half, beating the field of 66 runners with a time of 22:45.32. Tampa's Claudia Cancello was second 1:23.3 after Rampf finished.
Again the host Lions won the meet with 54 points, earning the 3-2 tiebreaker over Tampa. Palm Beach Atlantic rounded out the top three teams with 116 points.
The Wildcats return to action next weekend when they head to Princeton, N.J., for the Princeton Invitational on Saturday. The first race is set for 10:00 a.m.