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Thursday, May 23, 2024
The Observer

SMC Cross-Country: Squad finishes fifth at home race

Host Saint Mary's took fifth place at Friday's nine-team MIAA Jamboree as junior Megan McClowry led a tightly-grouped Belles unit that had all its runners finish within 20 seconds of each other.

This was the first home meet for the Belles since the 2002-2003 season, and the Belles took it as an opportunity to show off the program's progress in recent years.

"The Saint Mary's cross country team is such a great group of women," senior co-captain Caitlin Brodmerkel said. "We have a difficult time getting people to see that since we always compete so far from campus. I am so glad that we finally got to show our friends, classmates and faculty what our hours of hard work has enabled us to do."

McClowry finished the race in 20:43, with Brodmerkel (20:55) and freshman Joanne Almond (20:58) also finishing in under 21 minutes.

Freshman Arianne Rodriguez (21:01) and sophomore Catie Salyer (21:03) also provided counting times for the Belles.

"We are looking for our pack to continue to close the gap with McClowry and Arianne Rodriguez," Belles coach Jackie Bauters said before the meet. "Arianne has been sick and we're hoping to see her feeling better and have an outstanding day at home. The Calvin team is ranked second in the nation and will undeniably lead the entire field, but I would like to see our ladies stick up there with some of the young talent from Hope."

Calvin won the meet while Hope took second. Kalamazoo finished third while Adrian finished just ahead of the Belles.

"My goal for our team is to continue to improve throughout the season, as we have been," Brodmerkel said. "I would love to finish fourth or better in the MIAA conference again, which we did last year for the first time in our history. Personally, my goals are to be a good senior captain for my teammates and to improve my race times at each meet."

The Belles will compete in the Adrian Invitational on Oct. 3 and then head to Kalamazoo for the MIAA Championships on Nov. 1.