The Case Western Reserve University women's cross country team opened its 2019 campaign on a positive note, capitalizing on the performances of a number of newcomers to pick up a first-place finish at the Sudeck Classic Stampede at the Squire Valleevue Farm in Hunting Valley, Ohio on Saturday morning.
The Spartans finished the meet with a score of 31 points to finish in first, ahead of second-place John Carroll University (39) and third-place Allegheny College (66).
Three new members of the cross country team were the top-three finishers for the Spartans on Saturday. Sophomore Jana Fisher, who competed for track and field but not cross country as a freshman, placed third overall with a time of 15:19.6 for the 4K course. She was followed by freshman Melissa Phung in fifth place with a time of 15:27.3 and freshman Stephanie Wroblewski in sixth place with a time of 15:30.8. Completing the top-five scorers for the Spartans were sophomore Susanna Henry in seventh place with a time of 15:42.6 and senior Vanessa Pasadyn in 10th place with a mark of 15:44.3, while junior Kiera Olson (11th, 15:49.7) and junior Grace Kemerer (12th, 15:50.6) rounded out the top-seven for CWRU.
Other finishers for the Spartans in the field of 50 runners on Saturday included junior Olivia Battistoni (14th, 15:54.8), sophomore Julia Kocherzat (15th, 15:55.8), freshman Danielle Sarno (20th, 16:08.4), freshman Rae Dwyer (25th, 16:19.2), junior Cara Giannuzzi (29th, 16:32.4), sophomore Maddy Nacci (34th, 16:46.8), junior Madison Vargo (37th, 16:51.1), freshman Cassidy Hill (40th, 17:01.4), senior Mallorie Mitchem (43rd, 17:09.9) and freshman Suki Bristol (44th, 17:10.8).
John Carroll sophomore Cameron Bujaucius won the race with a time of 14:57.6, setting a record for the course, which was modified from previous seasons. Her teammate, freshman Sydney Jenko, placed second with a time of 14:57.7.
The Sudeck Sunset Classic Stampede is run in the honor of the legendary late former CWRU head cross country and track & field coach Bill Sudeck. During his 46-year career at the Case Institute of Technology and Case Western Reserve University, he led his cross country teams to 12 conference titles, leaving behind a legacy of success for the program.
The Spartans will be back in action next Saturday, September 7th at the Calvin Invitational in Grand Rapids, Michigan, as the team will get an early look at the course for the 2019 NCAA Great Lakes Regional meet.