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Rupprecht and Bailey lead cross country squads at Lock Haven Invitational

(Posted September 12, 2009)

LOCK HAVEN, Pa. -- The Juniata College men's and women's cross country teams competed in the Lock Haven University Invitational on Saturday morning at the West Branch Course in Lock Haven, Pa. On a rain soaked course, both teams turned in some strong individual performances in their second meet of the 2009 campaign.

The Juniata women finished sixth out of nine teams. They were defeated by Lock Haven, West Chester, IUP, Gannon, and Misericordia. The Juniata women beat Mercyhurst, Mansfield, and Clarion.

Senior Laura Rupprecht was the top finisher for the Juniata women as she took ninth place with a time of 23:54.91 on the 6 km (3.73 mile) course. That time was the second fastest of her career and fastest since the regional meet in 2007.

Rupprecht was followed closely by freshman Caroline Morgan, who took 17th place with a personal best time of 24:22.48. Juniors Megan McQuillan and Anne Wakabayashi took 37th and 38th, respectively, with times of 25:26.52 and 25:27.07. For Wakabayashi, this time was a 49 second improvement on her previous personal best set last season. The final scorer for Juniata was junior Elizabeth Linde, who took 58th with a time of 26:43.42. This time was an 88 second improvement on her previous personal best time set two seasons ago.

Rounding out Juniata's top seven were freshmen Sarah Trescher and Emily Rowley. Both finished with personal best times. Trescher took 60th with a time of 26:59.46. Rowley took 62nd with a time of 27:06.21.

Sophomore Casey Hoffman took 67th with a personal best time of 27:33.18. Senor Megan Peterson took 72nd with a time of 27:59.22. Senior Kerri Magerowski took 78th with a time of 28:49.80. That time eclipsed her previous personal best by 35 seconds. Freshman Kelsey Burton was the final Juniata finisher, taking 81st place with a personal best time of 29:07.71.

The Juniata men also took sixth place in the team competition, falling to Lock Haven, IUP, West Chester, Mercyhurst, and Misericordia. In the process, they defeated Mansfield, Gannon, and Pitt Bradford.

Senior Matthew Bailey led the Juniata men for the second week in a row and also set a new personal best time for the second week in a row. He finished the men's race in fifth place, just eight seconds behind winner Brandon Pomerantz of Lock Haven. His time of 26:32.85 for the 8 km (4.97 mile) course was a two second improvement on his previous personal best set last week in Pittsburgh.

Sophomores Nik Klena and Ceth Parker finished in 20th and 21st, respectively, with times of 27:28.05 and 27:30.41. For Klena, this time was a one second improvement on his previous personal best, set last year. Freshman Ryan Trexler (42nd in 29:15.92) and junior Kevin Donahue (45th in 29:29.82) were Juniata's final scorers.

Junior Steven Schmitt and sophomore Scott Hammer also earned spots in Juniata's top seven. Schmitt took 50th in 29:42.34 and Hammer took 61st in 30:49.08. Freshman John Lugg finished the race in 65th place with a personal best time of 31:28.79, which was a 52 second improvement on his previous best from last week.

The Juniata cross country teams will next compete at the Dickinson Long-Short Invitational in Carlisle, Pa., on September 19. After that, they will compete in a triangular meet against Messiah and Gettysburg in Grantham, Pa., on September 26.

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Contact John Wall at wallj@juniata.edu or (814) 641-3132 for more information.