CARTERSVILLE, Ga. – The women’s cross country team grabbed its first victory of the season at the 2017 Stan Sims Invitational, while the men’s team came in fourth place at Sam Smith Park on Friday night.
The race, which was hosted by Kennesaw State and took place on the same course that the ASUN Championship race will be at later this season, functioned as an ASUN Championship preview.
"It was really nice to be able to experience the conference championship course,” Lipscomb Director of Cross Country Bill Taylor said. “I was really happy with both races for us.”
Sophomore Courtney Brenner once again led the way for the women as she grabbed an individual win for the second consecutive week. She finished first overall with a time of 17:25.1.
"Courtney just took off and kept on pulling away,” Taylor said. “She is very strong and it was great to see her run her own race.”
Lipscomb secured the top four spots and seven of the top 10 in a dominant performance for the women. They finished with a score of 16, 59 points ahead of second-place Stetson and Kennesaw State.
"The women have improved in several areas already,” Taylor said. “While Courtney is out front for us, the packing behind her is getting better and better. The girls are calm and are enjoying running together.”
Senior Kacey Kemper (18:16.7), freshman Lauren Flynt (1:28.7), and Jacie Legois (18:28.7) took the next three spots, placing second, third, and fourth, respectively.
"Kacey looked strong in her first race of the season,” Taylor said. “She got stronger as the race went on. This was a great start to the season for her.
"I am really impressed with our freshmen girls. Lauren had another great performance. Jacie ran terrific in her collegiate debut. Lindsey, Chandler, Kayla and Haley made it 6 freshmen in our top 11. They are having fun and are very mature. They are also getting better each week.”
Senior Katie Sperry (18:51.2), junior Bridgette Doucet (18:59.9), and freshman Lindsey Marriott (19:10.4) all finished in the top 10 at sixth, eighth, and 10th, respectively.
"Katie Sperry also had another strong performance,” Taylor said. “It was her second week in a row in our top five.”
On the men’s side, Lipscomb placed fourth with 71 total points.
"Even though we raced a small men's team, we were very happy with what we saw,” Taylor said. “Ryan was testing things out and just got stronger and stronger as the race went on. He looked really smooth.”
Juniors Ryan Speer (26:47.9) and Psalm Ocampo (26:48.4) and freshman Jared Rodriguez (26:51.7) led the way, finishing close together at sixth, seventh, and eighth, respectively.
"Psalm had one of his best collegiate races,” Taylor said. “He was bold and stuck with the lead pack for over half the race. He held on well. It was a very encouraging performance.
"It was a strong collegiate debut from Jared too. He was solidly in the lead pack for quite a while and looked really good up there. He's going to have a great collegiate career.”
The Bisons will be back in action on Sept. 16 as they take on the Commodore Invite hosted by Vanderbilt in Nashville.