Tech women sixth, men place 10th at Greater Louisville Classic

Tech women sixth, men place 10th at Greater Louisville Classic

LOUISVILLE, Tenn. -- The Tennessee Tech women's cross country team earned a sixth place finish among the 14 Division I teams in their event at the Greater Louisville Classic Saturday morning, and the Golden Eagle men finished 10th among 14 Division programs in their race.

Tech earned five personal best times in the women's race and one more in the men's contest.

"We had quite a few PR's today. I'm very pleased at how we ran as a team," said Golden Eagle head coach Wayne Angel. "We will continue to get better."

Freshman Jenna Storms and junior Sarah Brandt led the effort for the Tech women, each posting PR times. Storms placed 17th individually in 18:24.85, while Brandt was just behind in 18th place with a time of 18:25.17.

"I thought our women ran a solid race today," Angel said. "We closed the gap from one to five much better than in the past. Jenna (Storms) stepped it up in a big way today. She's starting to learn how to race competitively."

For the Tech men, junior Geoffrey Sambu placed sixth individually.

"Sambu continues to show improvement," Angel said. "He finished in the top 17 (overall) out of some 286 runners. He should be in top shape by conference. As a team, we didn't fare as well as I had hoped, but I'm sure that we can turn things around in two weeks."

West Virginia took first place in the women's "Blue" race with 32 points, easily topping Mississippi (94) and Oakland (97), who waged a tight fight for second and third. Tennessee (119) was fourth and Lipscomb (210) took fifth. The Golden Eagles (356) were seventh behind UT Martin, while the top 10 teams included Detroit, East Tennessee State and Marshall.

Following Storms and Brandt, Purity Murray was third for the Golden Eagles with a personal best of 19:13.16. The balance of Tech's lineup included Sonel Bezuidenhuit (19:28.55), Madison Stremler (19:55.49), Angela Jepchirchir (20:26.69), Anna Cooper (21:09.88), Lera McNamara (21:12.16), Molly Griffin (21:21.65) and D'Arrien Jackson (22:34.50).  The times for Jepchirchir and Griffin were PRs.

Oakland claimed the men's title in the "Blue" division with 52 points, with Kentucky (146) second, Detroit (205) third, Toledo (285) fourth and Austin Peay (461) fifth. The second 10 included Lipscomb (465), Marshall (595), UT Martin (610) and Tennessee Tech (678).

Sambu's time of 25:17.01 placed him sixth among the Division I runners and 17th overall. Daniel Williamson, returning from an injury, placed 96th in 26:34.06, while Amos Kipchirchir was next in 27:32.60. Tech's only PR in the men's event came from Noah Rotich who ran a time of 27:44.20. Colin Gwaltney rounded out Tech's short-handed lineup, clocking a time of 29:10.36.

The Golden Eagles have next weekend off, before returning to action on the same course at the E.P Sawyer State Park for the NCAA Pre-Qualifying race.