Michigan State Women Finish 1-2-3 to Win the Colonial Inter-Regional Championship  

Posted by T ZAMAN in

Both of Michigan State's women and men cross country runners announced themselves big time Saturday (9-27-08) as the women used a 1-2-3 finish to capture the Colonial Inter-Regional women's title at the College of William & Mary in Williamsburg (VA), and the men were runner-up in their contest.Lisa Senakiewich was 1st, Nicole Bush was 2nd and Sarah Price was 3rd, all are seniors and were also the only 3 runners to crack 22 minutes in the 6K race (3.72 miles). Senakiewich clocked 21:03.1 followed by Bush in 21:08.2 and Price 21:31.8. For Senakiewich, winning was double sweet as the victory represented her first career cross-country title. The win was triple sweet as the Spartans last two scorers were both freshmen—Carlie Green was 5th in 22:06 and Tiffany Abrahamian was 8th in 22:20. The 1-2-3-5-8 finish gave MSU 19 points to host William & Mary's second place finish with 42 points. In cross-country, the low team score wins. To highlight Michigan State's depth on the women's side, sophomore Emily MacLeod was 9th in 22:22.4 and senior Laura Portis was 10th in 22:22.7. The Spartans emphasize team running rather than individual success, and it shows. Freshman Rebekah Smeltzer was 11th, junior Ashley Casavant 15th, junior Leah Elenbaas 16th, and sophomore Becky McCormack 28th.If Michigan State's second 5 women runners were a team they would have finished 9-10-11-15-16 with 61, good for a 3rd place team finish ahead of John Hopkins University (102 points), LaSalle University (114), Saint Joseph's (120), Hampton University (217), Norfolk State (221), Howard University (223) and Longwood (227). That is impressive!There is a reason why the Michigan State women are ranked No. 8 nationally in the pre-season poll by the U.S. Track & Field and Cross-Country Coaches Association. Now you know.Sophomore Spencer Beatty led the Spartan men by finishing 5th in 25:10.7 for the 8K race (4.96 miles). Like the team-running of the women, MSU took 8th through 12th places with freshman Joe Dimambro 8th (25:18.0), junior Max Goldak 9th (25:18.8), junior Shane Knoll 10th (25:24.4), senior Adam Sprangel 11th (25:25.8) and sophomore Pat Grosskopf 12th (25:28.9). The 5-7-8-9-10 finish was good for 39 points to William & Mary's 32.The depth on the men's side included junior Dan Lewis 18th, sophomore Mike Quick 19th, freshman Aaron Simoneau 24th and freshman Isaiah Van Doorne 32nd.If Michigan State's second 5 men runners were a team they would have finished 11-12-18-19-24 with 84, good for a 4th place team finish behind Tennessee at 3rd (71) and ahead of LaSalle University (99), John Hopkins University (151), Longwood (194), Howard University (231) & Hampton University (230). Joe Dimambro's 8th place finish was his third top-10 finish in as many races to begin his collegiate career as a freshman. Junior Shane Knoll's 10th place marked his second straight top-10 finish.Michigan State's cross-country program under the tutelage of Walt Drenth, Director of Cross-Country and Track & Field, is committed to win a national championship.In an additional sad note, Rita Arndt-Molis, former MSU Associate Head Cross-Country Coach for the men's and women's program and the Assistant Track and Field Coach for the past two years, has accepted a position as the Miami (OH) University Head Women's Cross-Country and Track and Field Coach.

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