SPORTS

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December 2, 2003

Women runners place 18th in national meet

Capping off a season of continued improvement, the University of Chicago women's cross country team placed 18th last Saturday at the NCAA Division III Women's Cross Country Championship in Hanover, Indiana.

Third-year Erin Steiner led the Maroons, placing 17th in the team standings and 27th overall with a time of 22:44.20 over the six-kilometer course. Because she placed among the top 35 finishers, Steiner earned All-American honors.

Second-year Jessica Winter was 23rd in the team standings and 42nd overall with a time of 23:08.80 and was followed by first-year Dilshanie Perera, 83rd (119th overall) in 24:01, and third-year Emily Kay, 101st (140th) in 24:16:00.

Fourth-year Darcy Flora rounded out the Maroons, scoring five and placing 129th and 173rd overall with a time of 24:51.60. Second-year Annie Sanders was 133rd (178th) in 24:58.70 and fourth-year Hannah Benton was 151st (197th) in 25:39.10.

Wartburg College third-year Missy Buttry won the meet, easily separating herself from the field of 213 runners to win in a time of 20:00.20, over a minute ahead of the second place finisher, third-year Liz Woodworth of UW-Oshkosh.

Middlebury College won the team competition, scoring a total of 135 points to beat Trinity College, who had 174 points. UW-Stevens Point was third with 193 points. The Maroons earned a team score of 353 points.

While the men's team did not qualify for the National Meet, three University of Chicago runners did compete as individual qualifiers in the men's championship.

Fourth-year Tom Haxton, who finished sixth in this race a year ago and was among the favorites to claim the individual title, was the only runner to stay with the overall winner, junior Josh Moen of Wartburg College, for the first two kilometers of the eight kilometer race. Haxton fell off Moen's blistering pace, however, and faded to a disappointing 70th place with a time of 26:23.

Moen won in a time of 24:34, almost thirty seconds ahead of the second-place finisher, freshman Macharia Yuot of Widener University. With the exception of Haxton through the first two kilometers, Moen ran entirely unchallenged by any other runner.

Second-year Teage O'Connor finished just behind Haxton in 71st with a time of 26:24. Also, fourth-year Patrick Sullivan finished in 78th place with a time of 26:27.

Calvin College easily won the team championships, scoring only 48 points to second-place UW-Stevens Point's 128. North Central College was third with 155 points.