Despite extreme humidity and less than ideal trail conditions, women’s cross country turned out a strong performance this Saturday at the Purple Valley Classic hosted at Mount Greylock Regional High School. Williams placed second in the 6k with a total score of 56 points, bested only by Middlebury with 45. Among the 16 competing teams in the race were Plattsburgh State, Amherst and NYU, who took home third, fourth and fifth, respectively. Williams also claimed second in the women’s 5k with a total of 29 points, losing by one point to Saint Rose (30 points).
Rookie Alison Smith ’15 once again was the Ephs’ top finisher in the 6k with a blazing time of 22:42. Her time placed her eighth overall. Chiara Del Piccolo ’14 was only a few seconds behind with a final time of 22:48, finishing in ninth place. The two Ephs were closely followed by a tight pack, consisting of Anna Spiers ’15, Leslie Blackshear ’14 and Shayna Barbash ’14. Spiers clocked in at 22:58 for 12th, Blackshear turned in a time of 23:03 for 13th and Barbash finished in 23:04 for 14th. Olivia Delia ’12 was not far behind, taking 16th place with a time of 23:15. Brianne Mirecki ’14 rounded out the top seven with a time of 23:33 and a 25th-place finish.
Both coaches and captains were very pleased with the results of the meet. “As far as the meet goes, the team did an awesome job working together despite muddy and humid conditions. The freshmen and sophomore women continue to lead the pack, which is wonderful to see,” commented co-captain Natalie Davis ’12. Co-captain, Elleree Erdos ’12, added, “We have so much depth this year, and that really showed on Saturday, with seven girls finishing in the top 25 in the 6k.”
Head Coach Pete Farwell also added, “the team was excited to compete on our home course with a big crowd, and they found an extra gear to propel them up the hills and through some mud patches, emerging with high runner-up team placing in both races. We’re in great shape and racing well together, looking forward to even further perfecting our pacing and kicks as we roll into October.”
The team will not race this week, but the women will travel to the Div. I New England Championship in Boston on Oct. 8.