CHICAGO – Finishing 29th overall in a field of 538 runners, senior Rachael Dean (Lindenhurst, Ill./Judson University/Lakes) led the No. 18 ranked Saint Xavier University women's cross country team to a 15th place finish out of the 45 teams competing at the39th Annual Sean Earl Loyola Lakefront Invitational Saturday morningat Montrose Beachin Chicago. Dean finished the 5K (5,000 meters) course with a time of 18:24. Junior Ashley Shares (Palos Park, Ill./Moraine Valley CC/Stagg) also finished in the top 100 Saturday coming in at No. 94 overall with a time of 19:11. The Cougars were the top NAIA team in the field finishing ahead of University of St. Francis (Ill.) at No. 18, Judson University (Ill.) at No. 22 and Roosevelt University (Ill.) at No. 38.
Freshman Elise Prieto (Orland Park, Ill./Sandburg) also ran well for SXU coming in at No. 155 with a time of 19:47, while sophomore Jordan Wallace (Frankfort, Ill./Lincoln-Way North) was No. 171 at 19:56. Freshman Kayla Droessler (Rockford, Ill./Boylan Catholic) completed the team scorers for Saint Xavier with a time of 20:10. Sophomore Krista Olenek (Algonquin, Ill./Marian Central Catholic) also ran a nice race finishing at No. 288 at 21:02 for the Cougars.
Saint Xavier heads to South Bend, Ind., on Friday, October 7, for the Bethel College Invitational. The women's race at St. Patrick County Park will begin at 5 p.m. (central) time.