Grand Rapids, Mich. - Seniors Lauren Dentzman (Lemont, Ill./Lemont) and Amanda Janosz (Orland Park, Ill./Sandburg) finished 19th and 20th, respectively, as the No. 21 ranked Saint Xavier University women's cross country team earned a fifth-place finish out of 21 teams participating at the NAIA Great Lakes Challenge hosted by Aquinas College (Mich.) Saturday afternoon at Riverside Park in Grand Rapids, Mich. Both runners crossed the finish line of the 5,000-meter (5K) race in a time of 19:13, a season-best time for Janosz. In addition, senior Amy Poull (Oak Forest, Ill./Oak Forest) had another strong showing for the Cougars finishing in 22nd place out of 223 runners with a time of 19:18.
Junior Kelly Malone (Oak Lawn, Ill./Mother McAuley) also posted a season-best time Saturday in 19:42, good enough for 39th place overall. Rounding out the top five for SXU was junior Jade Braden (Rocky River, Ohio/Rocky River) in 65th place with a time of 20:12. The competition at Saturday's meet was tough with the four teams placing ahead of Saint Xavier all ranked in the latest NAIA Top 25 Poll, including No. 8 Cedarville University (Ohio), No. 17 Spring Arbor University (Mich.), No. 10 Indiana Wesleyan University (Ind.) and No. 13 Aquinas College (Mich.).
"Amanda and Kelly both posted season-best times against some very tough NAIA programs and on a wet course," said Saint Xavier women's cross country coach Lisa Ebel. "This meet was the perfect experience for our team, because in two weeks, we will be looking to defend our conference championship and the competition looks tough this season."
Saint Xavier returns to action on Saturday, November 7, with the 2009 Chicagoland Collegiate Athletic Conference (CCAC) Cross Country Championships at Delwood Park in Lockport, Ill. The women's race is scheduled for a 10:30 a.m. start.Click here for results from the 2009 NAIA Great Lakes Challenge