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Friday, September 10, 2010Lipscomb cross country coach Bill Taylor sent a split squad to Chattanooga Friday night for the PowerAde Invitational hosted by the University of Tennessee-Chattanooga.
The Lady Bisons finished third. The Bisons were fifth.
"The women really stepped up,” Taylor said. “I think we sent a strong statement to beat a conference rival (Kennesaw State) with nine of our top women not competing. The women just keep getting stronger from the front all the way through the team.
“Basically, the women who raced tonight are as strong as many teams varsity seven. And we weren't that far back from Chattanooga, who is regionally ranked. Everything we are doing is exciting right now.”
Host Chattanooga won both the men’s and women’s divisions.
Middle Tennessee State was second in the women’s race.
In the men’s division Kennesaw State, also from the Atlantic Sun Conference, was second. Austin Peay finished third and Alabama was fourth.
Lacey Printz was eighth, the top individual finisher for the Lady Bisons. Cortney Thomas also finished in the top 20, crossing the finish line in 14th place.
Priya Pappu was 21st followed by Ali Keith in 23rd and Caitlin Anderson in 25th place.
"All the women ran great,” Taylor said. “Special praise goes to Lacey Printz who really stepped up and ran a fast and relaxed race, Cortney Thomas who just keeps getting better and better, and Priya Pappu who is improving dramatically by the day.”
Katie Bunker was 28th and Miranda Klein was 29th.
Leading the Bisons was Ashton Fisher in 19th place. Cormac Carolan was 22nd. Jonathan Williams finished 2th. Andrew Jones was 29th and Ben Wright was 30th.
Rounding out the field for the Bisons were Aaron Todd (31st) and Cliff Denton (37th).
"The men have some work to do,” Taylor said. “Most of the men in this group aren't racing badly per se, but it's not good right now either. They have a lot more to give, and I think they are kind of giving in.
“This is not a sport for the faint of heart. It's a sport you must push through the pain for yourself and your team in order to have success. There is no other way. These guys don't get that yet, but hopefully they will soon.”
Nine of the top women and six of the top men will fly to Burlington, Vt., to race against the University of Vermont and Columbia University on Sunday at the Catamount Family Center in Williston, Vt. The men race 8000 meters at 10 a.m., while the women race 5000 meters at 11 a.m.
"Both teams have a ton of potential,” Taylor said. “Right now the women are closer to realizing what they are capable of, but both have time to figure this out fully.
"It will be fun now to watch our top men and women compete in Vermont this weekend.”