Kan. - Tabor
College freshman cross country runner Brielle Lund earned All-KCAC honors while
helping lead the Lady Jays to a 7th place finish at the Kansas Collegiate
Athletic Conference meet hosted by Kansas Wesleyan University in Salina, Kan.
Lund, who finished the
5-kilometer course in 10th place overall out of 67 runners with a time of
19:23.20, falling just short of qualifying for the NAIA national cross country
meet in her first season of collegiate racing.
"Brielle ran a great race, not
only closing well like she has over the last several races, but also managing
to beat a quality personal record by 3 seconds," said Head Cross Country Coach
"I think we ended the season well at the conference
championships," added Swaney. "Nearly 20 percent of the 5k course was into a
strong wind which slowed our times down on the day. It was a flat course with
two small hills so I think the wind was the biggest factor in the race."
"The team had a tougher fight to
hold onto their seventh place finish from last year than I thought they would. We
had beaten Bethany easily several times this season and if Tessa Siebert and
Meagan Beals hadn't come out to run this one meet in an attempt to help us
improve our team score then we would have lost to Bethany instead of beating
them by only nine points."
Trailing the 9th place
runner by 10 seconds with about a half mile to go, Lund caught a woman from
Friends in the last 100m to move into 10th place. The move cut the
gap to 9th by about half, getting her within 5 seconds of the last automatic
individual-qualifying spot to nationals.
"It just ended up being too much
of a gap to cover that late in the race," said Swaney. "Going into the meet I
thought Friends' women's team had an excellent shot of receiving an at-large
berth to nationals which would help Brielle qualify if she finished outside of
the top five non-team qualifiers. She ended up as the sixth individual, but
with Friends dropping a few spots in the national rankings after the conference
meet, she fell just one spot short of getting the bid."
Other finishers for the Lady Jays
included senior Tessa Siebert in 36nd place with a time of 21:58, sophomore
Erin Flaming in 39th place with a time of 22:04, freshman Makenzie King in 42nd
place with a time of 22:14, freshman Megan Beals in 50th place with a time of
22:50 senior Elissa Richert in 54th place with a time of 24:15, freshman Nicole
Hurly in 57th place with a time of 24:59, and freshman Jordan Scheer in 58
place with a time of 25:09.64.
"There were definitely some
quality performances throughout the season," said Swaney. "I thought Brielle
adjusted well to college running, but I honestly didn't expect her to run as
well as she did this year. Everyone worked hard but we still had fun at
practice and at meets. I am sad to see our one senior Elissa go, but I'm
confident that we'll be able to build on what we have accomplished these last
few months and be even better next year."