Tech women finish second, men third at TTU Invitational

Place, Light pace women's team;
Taylor, DeLorenzo lead men's squad

COOKEVILLE, Tenn. -- Stephanie Place finished first and Keri Light second to lead the Tennessee Tech women's cross country team to second place Friday at the TTU Invitational at Southern Hills Golf Course. In the men's race, Sam Taylor was Tech's top finisher with Joseph DeLorenzo close behind as the Golden Eagle men's team finished third.

"This year's meet was the largest one we have had," said Tech coach Tony Cox. "It was a great day to run. Stephanie Place ran well and had one of her fastest times for that course. Keri Light had a great day and finished second. The competition was the best we have had at this meet so far."

Milligan placed four runners in the top six to claim the women's team title with 27 points. Tech had the top two runners in the meet with Place and Light, and finished second with 58 points. Evansville (70) was third, followed by North Alabama (106), Montevallo (150), Tennessee State (189), Maryville College (217) and Reinhardt College (266).

Place covered the hilly 5K course in 18:00, posting the fifth fastest time in Tech women's cross country history. Light took second in 19:08. Tiffany Palmer was Tech's third finisher, placing 11th in 19:57, followed across the line by Ashley Evans in 20th place (20:44), Traci Jones in 24th (21:13), Amanda Simmons in 29th (21:43) and Sarah Kmet in 55th (26:48).

While Milligan's Austin Ellis took first place individually in the 8K men's event, Evansville claimed the team title in the second race of the afternoon with 32 points. Milligan (43) was second, and Tech (58) took third. North Alabama (141) finished fourth, followed by Maryville College (207), Reinhardt College (217) and Tennessee State (229).

Ellis won with a time of 26:25, a full 17 seconds ahead of the runnerup. For Tech, Taylor covered the distance in 27:20 to finish sixth and DeLorenzo was seventh in 27:23. Ben Thompson was next for the Golden Eagles, running a 27:29 for 11th place. Rounding out Tech's lineup, Jarrad Read was 14th (28:07), Ben Shassere 20th (28:41), Peter Woerner 22nd (29:00), Ethan McGroom 27th (29:33), and Brian Kennedy 30th (29:48).