Hamilton Earns Horizon League First-Team Honors as Women’s XC Places Fourth
Sophomore Samantha Hamilton placed seventh overall at the Horizon League Championship Meet at Montrose Harbor Beach Park in Chicago, Ill., Saturday to lead the women's team to an impressive fourth place finish. The men's squad continued their improvement as they placed seventh overall at the league meet.
Finishing ahead of Wright State, Cleveland State, UIC, Detroit, Valpraiso and Green Bay, the women's team scored 111 points, five points better than last season and just eight points shy of breaking into the top three.
"We are excited to see these young ladies step up after losing Lauren Blasé, a top-ten Horizon League runner, and improving from last year," Head Coach Brian Gorby said.
Hamilton was once again the first Penguin to complete the 5k race with a time of 18:17. Her seventh place finish out of 83 runners qualified her for First-Team Horizon League honors. She was followed by Nelly Yegon, who finished the race in 18:57, which was good enough for 15th place. Though Yegon was one place short of receiving Second-Team Horizon League honors, she improved from last year's championship by nearly 50 places. Freshman Anna Pompeo was the third runner in for the Guins with a time of 19:13; she was only nine seconds off of Horizon League Freshman of the Year Megan Janezic (Loyola). Katherine Digby finished in 22nd place (19:15) and Rachel Huddle finished in 47th place (20:05) to round out the top five for the Guins.
Senior runner Kayla Witmer returned from her injury to run in her only race of the season, finishing the course in 20:20. Kelcie Witmer, Lea Byers and Jionna Bodrick each noted significant improvements from the beginning of the season, finishing with times of 21:57, 22:18 and 22:49, respectively.
"With the girls all being freshman and sophomores, they are looking forward to working hard to go after [top places] next year," said Gorby.
7. Samantha Hamilton 18:17
15. Nelly Yegon 18:57
22. Anna Pompeo 19:13
24. Katherine Digby 19:15
47. Rachel Huddle 20:05
56. Kayla Witmer 20:20
75. Kelcie Witmer 21:57
77. Lea Byers 22:18
81. Jionna Bodrick 22:49
With 38 seconds between the first and fifth YSU runners, the men's team ended the season with another tight pack. Beating Valpraiso and Green Bay, the squad finished seventh overall, claiming 167 points.
"The 38-second gap is a positive, but we have to work hard in the future to develop a frontrunner to move up in the standings," Gorby said.
The top five runners consisted of one freshman and four seniors. Jim Ramson finished the 8k first for the Guins, placing 29th out of 104 runners with a time of 26:13. He was followed by Eric Rupe, who was 36th with a time of 26:26, and Joe Copploe and Jake Dialesandro, who finished together with times of 26:43 and 26:44, respectively. Jake Lape completed the top five with a time of 26:51.
29. Jim Ramson 26:13
36. Eric Rupe 26:26
39. Joe Copploe 26:43
42. Jake Dialesandro 26:44
43. Jake Lape 26:51
45. Scott Denham 26:53
68. Lance Ronghi 27:46
88. Aron Korir 28:57