GREENSBORO, N.C. - The UNCG women’s cross country team finished fifth as a team at the 2014 Southern Conference Championships Friday morning hosted by the Spartans at the Ivey M. Redmon Sports Complex in Kernersville. This marked the first time in program history UNCG has hosted the SoCon Cross Country Championships.
Redshirt sophomore Eira Jensen (Alsvag, Norway/Sortland Videregaende Skole) and junior Katlyn Ayers (Fort Valley, Va./Strasburg) were the Spartans’ top finishers, placing 11th and 13th overall respectively to earn Second Team All-SoCon accolades.
Jensen finished the 5,000-meter race in a time 17:37.98, just missing a top 10 finish. Her time of 17:37.98 improved over a minute from last year’s SoCon Championship race, which saw her win SoCon All-Freshman Team honors with a time of 18:48.15. Ayers also improved dramatically from this race last year as her time of 17:47.38 was good for 13th place this year after posting a time of 19:37.04 in last year’s championship.
Redshirt sophomore Katherine Link (Avon Lake, Ohio/Avon Lake) finished the race in 26th place overall with a time of 18:22.35. Link’s time is a personal-best, trimming nine seconds off her previous time of 18:22.35 set earlier this year at the Notre Dame Invitational. Freshman Amanda Branch (Greensboro, N.C.) also set a new personal-best in the 5,000-meter distance at 19:16.65, over a minute faster than her time of 29:19.30 set at Notre Dame.
Sophomore Samiiah Wilson (Apex, N.C./Cardinal Gibbons) turned in a time of 19:57.41, just under a half a second faster than last year’s SoCon time. Junior Meredith Hicks (Raleigh, N.C./Leesville) posted a time of 20:59.64 while sophomore Katlyn Adkins (Fayetteville, N.C./Terry Sanford) recorded a time of 21:06.66, a new personal-best.
Furman won the team and individual titles on the women’s side as the Paladins scored 22 total points with Allie Buchalski winning the title in a time of 16:44.42. Chattanooga was second with 71 points, Samford third with 90 points, East Tennessee State was fourth with 104 points and the Spartans were fifth with 161 points. Mercer (175), Western Carolina (175), VMI (208), The Citadel (239) and Wofford (247) rounded out the standings.
UNCG 5,000-Meter Times At SoCon Championship
11. Eira Jensen, 17:37.98
13. Katlyn Ayers, 17:47.38
26. Katherine Link, 18:22.35
47. Amanda Branch, 19:16.65
64. Samiiah Wilson, 19:57.41
69. Meredith Hicks, 20:59.64
70. Katlyn Adkins, 21:06.66